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Voice of America, 97-12-16

Voice of America: Selected Articles Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Voice of America <gopher://gopher.voa.gov>


CONTENTS

  • [01] ALBRIGHT / NATO (S) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)
  • [02] ALBRIGHT-NATO OVERNIGHTER (S ONLY) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)
  • [03] CLINTON / BOSNIA (S-ONLY) BY DAVID SWAN (STATE DEPARTMENT)
  • [04] CLINTON / NATO (L) BY DAVID SWAN (STATE DEPARTMENT)
  • [05] CONFLICT RESOLUTION: KOSOVARS AND THEIR MUSIC BY JUDITH LATHAM (WASHINGTON)
  • [06] CZECH POL (S & L) BY ART CHIMES (PRAGUE)
  • [07] EURO STOCKS (S-ONLY) BY PAUL FRANCUCH (LONDON)
  • [08] NATO / BOSNIA (S) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)
  • [09] NATO MINISTERS UPDATE (L) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)
  • [10] NATO/ENLARGEMENT (S) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)
  • [11] NY ECON WRAP (L ONLY) BY JOE CHAPMAN (NEW YORK)
  • [12] TUESDAY'S EDITORIALS BY ANDREW N. GUTHRIE (WASHINGTON)
  • [13] YEARENDER/BALKANS '97 BY ART CHIMES (PRAGUE)
  • [14] YEARENDER: RUSSIA POLITICS '97 (RE-ISSUE) BY MICHELE KELEMEN (MOSCOW)

  • [01] ALBRIGHT / NATO (S) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224178
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: NATO FOREIGN MINISTERS ARE MEETING IN BRUSSELS. AS RON PEMSTEIN REPORTS FROM THE BELGIAN CAPITAL, SECRETARY OF STATE MADELEINE ALBRIGHT IS URGING HER EUROPEAN ALLIES TO CONTRIBUTE MORE FOR BOSNIA.

    TEXT: SECRETARY OF STATE ALBRIGHT HAS TOLD HER FELLOW FOREIGN MINISTERS THE UNITED STATES CANNOT CONTINUE TO PAY 90 PERCENT OF THE COST OF TRAINING AND EQUIPPING THE BOSNIAN POLICE.

    IN A STATEMENT TO THE CLOSED MEETING, MS. ALBRIGHT SAYS A MORE-PROMINENT EUROPEAN ROLE IN BOSNIA IS NECESSARY TO CONVINCE THE CONGRESS TO MAINTAIN SOME U-S TROOP PRESENCE PAST NEXT JUNE.

    THE NATO MINISTERS ARE APPROVING OPTIONS FOR A CONTINUED NATO-LED FORCE IN BOSNIA. A DECISION IS EXPECTED BY NATO PLANNERS EARLY NEXT YEAR. SECRETARY OF STATE ALBRIGHT SAYS EUROPE CAN CONTRIBUTE POLICE FORCES TO BRING LOCAL POLICE IN BOSNIA UP TO STANDARDS.

    NATO IS TAKING ANOTHER STEP TOWARD ENLARGEMENT AT THIS MEETING -- SIGNING THE ACCESSION PROTOCOLS WITH POLAND, HUNGARY AND THE CZECH REPUBLIC. THIS WILL START THE PROCESS FOR THE NATO LEGISLATURES TO APPROVE EXPANSION OF THE ALLIANCE TO THOSE THREE COUNTRIES IN APRIL, 1999. SECRETARY OF STATE ALBRIGHT EXPECTS THE AMERICAN DEBATE ON NATO ENLARGEMENT TO BE VIGOROUS. (SIGNED)
    NEB / RP / CB / WD
    16-Dec-97 6:30 AM EST (1130 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [02] ALBRIGHT-NATO OVERNIGHTER (S ONLY) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224218
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: NATO FOREIGN MINISTERS MEET TODAY WITH RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER EVGENY PRIMAKOV IN THE SECOND MEETING OF THE NATO-RUSSIAN COUNCIL. V-O-A'S CORRESPONDENT RON PEMSTEIN REPORTS FROM BRUSSELS, NATO HAS TAKEN THE NEXT STEP WITH PROSPECTIVE MEMBERS POLAND, HUNGARY AND THE CZECH REPUBLIC.

    TEXT: THE NATO RUSSIAN COUNCIL IS DESIGNED TO INFORM RUSSIA OF NATO'S PLANNING, NOT TO GIVE RUSSIA A VETO OVER WHAT THE ALLIANCE DECIDES. THE FIRST COUNCIL MEETING WAS HELD AT THE UNITED NATIONS LAST SEPTEMBER AND AT THE TIME SECRETARY OF STATE MADELEINE ALBRIGHT SAID THE OBJECT OF THE COUNCIL IS TO MAKE RUSSIA BORED WITH NATO INSTEAD OF SUSPICIOUS.

    THE MEETING FOLLOWS THE SIGNING YESTERDAY BETWEEN NATO FOREIGN MINISTERS AND THEIR COUNTERPARTS FROM POLAND, HUNGARY AND THE CZECH REPUBLIC. THE ACCESSION PROTOCOL CLEARS THE WAY FOR RATIFICATION VOTES IN THE 16 NATO PARLIAMENTS.

    SECRETARY OF STATE ALBRIGHT SAYS NATO IS LIKELY TO INVITE OTHER NEW MEMBERS IN 1999.

    ///ALBRIGHT ACT///

    IT IS NOT A QUESTION OF WHETHER THERE WILL BE NEW INVITEES, IT'S A QUESTION OF WHEN AND HOW.

    ///END ACT///

    SECRETARY OF STATE ALBRIGHT LEAVES BRUSSELS LATER IN THE DAY FOR PARIS WHERE SHE SIGNS AN ANTI-BRIBERY CONVENTION. (SIGNED)
    NEB/RP/PT
    16-Dec-97 6:19 PM EST (2319 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [03] CLINTON / BOSNIA (S-ONLY) BY DAVID SWAN (STATE DEPARTMENT)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224209
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: PRESIDENT CLINTON SAYS HE WILL ANNOUNCE IN A FEW DAYS WHETHER THE UNITED STATES WILL EXTEND ITS MISSION IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA. V-O-A'S DAVID SWAN REPORTS FROM THE STATE DEPARTMENT, WHERE MR. CLINTON HELD A NEWS CONFERENCE (TUESDAY).

    TEXT: THE PRESIDENT SAYS THE ADMINISTRATION, CONGRESS AND THE ALLIES ARE STILL DISCUSSING THE MATTER. BUT HE IS WIDELY EXPECTED TO KEEP SOME U-S TROOPS IN BOSNIA, AS PART OF A FOLLOW-ON NATO PEACEKEEPING FORCE AFTER THE CURRENT MISSION ENDS (IN JUNE). MR. CLINTON SAYS THERE IS STILL MUCH TO BE DONE IN THE FORMER YUGOSLAVIA.

    /// CLINTON ACT ///

    WHAT I WANT TO DO IS TO SEE THAT THE PEACE PROCESS CONTINUES. I THINK ONE OF THE THINGS THAT ALL OF OUR MILITARY PEOPLE AGREE ON IS THAT WE MUST DO MORE TO BEEF UP (STRENGTHEN) THE CIVILIAN POLICE THERE.

    // END ACT //

    THE PRESIDENT IS EXPECTED TO REVEAL A DECISION BEFORE HIS BRIEF HOLIDAY VISIT TO BOSNIA EARLY NEXT WEEK. HE MUST ALSO PERSUADE A REPUBLICAN-LED CONGRESS TO GO ALONG WITH THE PLAN WHEN THE HOUSE (OF REPRESENTATIVES) AND SENATE RECONVENE NEXT YEAR. (SIGNED)
    NEB/DS/GKT/RRM
    16-Dec-97 4:08 PM EST (2108 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [04] CLINTON / NATO (L) BY DAVID SWAN (STATE DEPARTMENT)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224207
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: PRESIDENT CLINTON HAS ANNOUNCED PLANS FOR A 50TH ANNIVERSARY NATO SUMMIT THAT HE HOPES WILL INCLUDE NEW MEMBERS' POLAND, THE CZECH REPUBLIC AND HUNGARY. V-O-A'S DAVID SWAN REPORTS, THE PRESIDENT IS URGING THE U-S SENATE TO MOVE QUICKLY TO RATIFY THE EASTWARD EXPANSION OF NATO THAT INVOLVES THE THREE COUNTRIES.

    TEXT: IN A NEWS CONFERENCE AT THE STATE DEPARTMENT (TUESDAY), MR. CLINTON HAILED WHAT HE CALLS A MILESTONE SIGNING OF DOCUMENTS BRINGING THE FORMER WARSAW PACT STATES INTO THE WESTERN ALLIANCE. HE SAYS HE WILL PUT THE MATTER BEFORE THE SENATE EARLY ON, IN HOPES OF WINNING THE REQUIRED TWO-THIRDS VOTE OF APPROVAL.

    /// CLINTON ACT ///

    I WILL PROMPTLY SEEK THE SENATE'S ADVICE AND CONSENT ON NATO EXPANSION WHEN CONGRESS RETURNS IN JANUARY. THE UNITED STATES HAS LED THE WAY IN TRANSFORMING THE ALLIANCE. NOW WE SHOULD BE AMONG THE FIRST TO VOTE YES FOR NATO'S HISTORIC ENGAGEMENT.

    /// END ACT ///

    WHILE SOME SENATORS WORRY ABOUT THE COSTS OF THE PLAN, IT HAS WON THE SUPPORT OF KEY REPUBLICANS AND HAS SO FAR NOT ATTRACTED MUCH OPPOSITION. THE PRESIDENT HOPES TO HAVE THE EXPANSION FINISHED BY NATO'S 50TH ANNIVERSARY IN 1999 -- WHEN HE SAYS THE ALLIES WILL COME TO WASHINGTON FOR A SPECIAL SUMMIT.

    /// CLINTON ACT ///

    TOGETHER WE WILL STRENGTHEN NATO FOR THE NEXT 50 YEARS AND I HOPE WE WILL BE WELCOMING ITS NEWEST MEMBERS.

    /// END ACT ///

    MEANWHILE, NATO MUST DECIDE WHAT KIND OF PRESENCE TO KEEP IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA AFTER THE CURRENT MILITARY MISSION ENDS NEXT JUNE. MR. CLINTON IS WIDELY EXPECTED TO EXTEND THE AMERICAN DEPLOYMENT. AT THE SAME TIME, HE SAYS, THE FOLLOW-ON MISSION MUST HAVE CLEAR OBJECTIVES AND MARKERS FOR SUCCESS OR FAILURE.

    /// CLINTON ACT ///

    I STILL DON'T BELIEVE THAT THERE SHOULD BE ANYBODY INTERESTED IN SOME KIND OF PERMANENT STATIONING OF A GLOBAL MILITARY PRESENCE ALL OVER BOSNIA.

    /// END ACT ///

    THE PRESIDENT SUGGESTED HE MAY ANNOUNCE A DECISION BEFORE PAYING A BRIEF HOLIDAY VISIT TO BOSNIA NEXT WEEK (NEXT MONDAY). (SIGNED)
    NEB/DS/RRM
    16-Dec-97 3:49 PM EST (2049 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [05] CONFLICT RESOLUTION: KOSOVARS AND THEIR MUSIC BY JUDITH LATHAM (WASHINGTON)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=WORLDWIDE ENGLISH FEATURE
    NUMBER=7-17755
    TELEPHONE=619-3464
    EDITOR=GARY EDQUIST
    CONTENT= (TAPE CUTS IN AUDIO SERVICES)

    INTRO: SEVEN YEARS AGO THE SERBIAN PARLIAMENT ABOLISHED THE AUTONOMY OF ITS TWO AUTONOMOUS REGIONS, KOSOVO AND VOJVODINA. INCLUDED IN THE WAVE OF FIRINGS IN KOSOVO WERE ABOUT 140,000 ALBANIAN CITIZENS WHO HAD WORKED IN GOVERNMENT JOBS -- INCLUDING TEACHING, THE MEDIA, ENTERTAINMENT, AND THE ARTS. ALBANIAN KOSOVARS RESPONDED BY SETTING UP A PARALLEL GOVERNMENT WITH THEIR OWN ELECTED OFFICIALS AND A SEPARATE SYSTEM OF EDUCATION. LIKE MANY OTHER ALBANIAN KOSOVARS, ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR MUSICIANS IN KOSOVO AND HIS WIFE HAD TO

    FORGE A NEW LIFE. VOA'S JUDITH LATHAM SPOKE WITH THEM

    ABOUT THE INNER RESOURCES THAT SOME MEMBERS OF THE INTELLIGENTSIA IN KOSOVO HAVE BEEN CULTIVATING. HERE'S _____ WITH A REPORT.

    TEXT: GJERGJ KACINARI [JERG KAH-CHEE-NAHR-EE] AND HIS WIFE, GRETA [GRET-AH], WERE AMONG THE TENS OF THOUSANDS OF KOSOVARS WHOM THE SERBIAN GOVERNMENT SACKED IN 1990. THE KACINARIS, A MIDDLE-AGED COUPLE WITH REFINED TASTES, LIVE IN AN APARTMENT IN PRISTINA. LIKE OTHERS, THEY HAVE EXPERIENCED A STEEP DECLINE IN THEIR STANDARD OF LIVING OVER THE PAST SEVEN YEARS. GJERGJ KACINARI, A COMPOSER, CONDUCTOR, AND FORMER CELEBRITY WITH PRISTINA RADIO AND TELEVISION, SAYS FOR MANY KOSOVARS THE LOSS OF THEIR JOBS WAS THE BEGINNING OF A LENGTHY PROCESS OF REINVENTING THEIR LIVES. TAPE A: CUT ONE -- GJERGJ KACINARI (ESTABLISH 5 SECONDS AND FADE UNDER) TAPE B: CUT ONE -- ENGLISH TRANSLATION (0:39) "AT THE BEGINNING WE ALL THOUGHT THAT THIS SITUATION WOULD NOT GO ON FOR LONG AND THAT THOSE WHO FIRED US WOULD COME TO THEIR SENSES AND CHANGE THEIR MINDS. AT THE START, IT WAS NOT EASY. WE WERE UNABLE TO COPE WITH THE SITUATION BECAUSE IT CAME AS A SHOCK TO ALL OF US. SO, THERE WAS A LONG PEROD OF TIME UNTIL WE MOBILIZED OUR FORCES TO DO SOME OTHER KIND OF WORK. NOW I DO ANYTHING THAT IS RELATED TO MUSIC. I STARTED WITH AN ANTHOLOGY OF OLD TOWN SONGS. OF COURSE, PRISTINA RADIO AND TELEVISION HAD THOSE SONGS ON TAPE, BUT THEY NEVER EXISTED IN WRITTEN FORM. NOW, I WORK AS A SINGER, SWITCHING FROM ONE COFFEE HOUSE TO ANOTHER, TO ENTERTAIN CLIENTS.

    TEXT: THE RESTAURANTS AND OUTDOOR CAFES OF PRISTINA, GJERGJ KACINARI SAYS, DRAW LARGE CROWDS OF PEOPLE WHO ARE HUNGRY FOR THESE OLD SONGS. THEY EVOKE A NOSTALGIA, NOT ONLY FOR CHILDHOOD BUT FOR THE HISTORICAL PAST OF THE ALBANIAN PEOPLE. TAPE A: CUT TWO -- GJERGJ KACINARI (ESTABLISH 5 SECONDS AND FADE UNDER) TAPE B: CUT TWO -- ENGLISH TRANSLATION (0:46) "I LOVED THESE SONGS AS A CHILD, AND FROM THAT TIME ON. I TRY TO SING THEM IN A SINCERE AND EMOTIONAL WAY. ESPECIALLY DURING THESE TIMES, IT MAKES ME VERY EMOTIONAL, SOMETIMES EXCEEDINGLY SO. THESE ARE LOVE SONGS WITH WORDS AND TUNES THAT ARE SO BEAUTIFUL, THEY ARE RARELY HEARD IN ANY OTHER PEOPLE. THE WORLD KNOWS US ONLY AS A PEOPLE WHO CAN PLAY THE 'CIFTELI' [A DOUBLE-STRINGED MUSICAL INSTRUMENT]. HOWEVER, THEY NOW SEE WE HAVE A MUSIC LIKE NO OTHER PEOPLE AND WE HAVE A MIXTURE OF RHYTHMS AND COLORFUL INTERPRETATIONS. THESE ARE SONGS THAT WE HAVE PASSED DOWN GENERATION AFTER GENERATION, BECAUSE WE ARE A VERY OLD PEOPLE. AND BASED ON THESE SONGS, SCHOLARS SHOULD BE ABLE TO DETERMINE JUST HOW ANCIENT A PEOPLE WE ARE."

    TEXT: GJERGJ KACINARI SAYS A SONG THAT HE AND HIS WIFE AND AUDIENCES ENJOY IS "THE NIGHTINGALE." IT TELLS OF THE PAIN OF THE CHILD OF A SINGLE MOTHER. TAPE A: CUT THREE -- MUSIC (SUNG BY GJERGJ KACINARI) (1:08) TAPE B: CUT THREE -- ENGLISH TRANSLATION (GRETA KACINARI) (0:23) "NIGHTINGALE, OH POOR NIGHTINGALE, WOULD YOU GIVE ME THE BRANCH [PETAL] OF A ROSE, TO MAKE A MEDICINE AND PUT IT IN MY THROAT, TO EASE THE WOUNDS MY HEART HAS. BECAUSE MY MOTHER HAS RAISED ME WITH A LOT OF PAIN, WITHOUT ANOTHER PARENT."

    TEXT: GRETA KACINARI, THE PRINCIPAL OF AN ALBANIAN-LANGUAGE SCHOOL IN PRISTINA, SAYS SHE URGED HER HUSBAND TO PUBLISH THESE SONGS AFTER HIS FATHER DIED, DURING THE RECENT WAR IN THE FORMER YUGOSLAVIA. TAPE B: CUT FOUR -- GRETA KACINARI (0:59) "HE WAS VERY, VERY SAD AND VERY UPSET, SO I JUST TOLD HIM, 'COME ON, LET'S TRY TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT YOUR BOOK OF OLD SONGS.' ALL THE TIME WE SANG THE SONGS BECAUSE HE HAD TO MIX THE WORDS WITH THE MUSICAL NOTATION, AND THAT WAS THE TIME WE SANG A LOT. I THINK, FOR ALBANIAN PEOPLE, TEARS AND LAUGHTER AND SONGS HAVE THE SAME MEANING, ESPECIALLY IN THESE DAYS. THESE ARE THE WORST DAYS OF OUR LIVES. BUT, YOU KNOW, THE WOMEN OF KOSOVA, WHEN WE GET UP IN THE MORNING, FIRST WE PUT OUR MAKEUP ON TO LOOK BETTER, AND WE SMILE BECAUSE IT MAKES US STRONGER. OH, GOD! WE START TO CRY, AFTER THAT WE AGAIN SING, OR WE TELL JOKES, WE JUST TRY TO HELP OURSELVES IN THAT WAY -- ESPECIALLY WITH SINGING."

    TEXT: GRETA KACINARI SAYS, FOR HER PEOPLE, THE OLD MUSIC IS A REFUGE, A FORM OF POLITICAL RESISTANCE, AND A SOURCE OF COURAGE. TAPE A: CUT FOUR -- MUSIC (SUNG BY GJERGJ AND GRETA KACINARI) (0:44)
    16-Dec-97 4:00 PM EST (2100 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [06] CZECH POL (S & L) BY ART CHIMES (PRAGUE)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224193
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    ///// EDS: USE OPT FOR LONG REPORT /////

    INTRO: CZECH PRESIDENT VACLAV HAVEL HAS NAMED A NEW PRIME MINISTER AFTER A FUND-RAISING SCANDAL BROUGHT DOWN THE PREVIOUS GOVERNMENT. CORRESPONDENT ART CHIMES REPORTS FROM PRAGUE.

    TEXT: PRESIDENT HAVEL NAMED JOSEF TOSOVSKY TO HEAD A CARETAKER GOVERNMENT THAT WILL SERVE UNTIL ELECTIONS, PROBABLY FIVE OR SIX-MONTHS FROM NOW.

    PRESIDENT HAVEL AGREED WITH POLITICAL LEADERS THAT THE INTERIM GOVERNMENT WOULD BE LED BY A NON-PARTISAN PRIME MINISTER. MR. TOSOVSKY IS A CAREER BANKER AND LONGTIME HEAD OF THE CENTRAL BANK. HE PRESIDED OVER THE CURRENCY DIVISION WHEN CZECHOSLOVAKIA SPLIT UP (INTO THE CZECH AND SLOVAK REPUBLICS) FIVE YEARS AGO.

    PRESIDENT HAVEL SAID HE EXPECTS THE NEW GOVERNMENT WILL SUBMIT ITS PROGRAM TO PARLIAMENT IN JANUARY, AND HE EXPRESSED CONFIDENCE THAT THE LAWMAKERS WILL ENDORSE IT.

    /// REST OPTIONAL - FOR LONG C-R ///

    THE PRESIDENT SAID MR. TOSOVSKY HAD THE SUPPORT OF THE THREE COALITION PARTNERS, AND IS ALSO ACCEPTABLE TO THE OPPOSITION SOCIAL DEMOCRATS.

    JOSEF TOSOVSKY WAS AMONG SEVERAL CANDIDATES PRESENTED TO PRESIDENT HAVEL BY JOSEF LUX, THE HEAD OF THE JUNIOR COALITION PARTNER, THE CHRISTIAN DEMOCRATS. MR. LUX HAD BEEN ASKED TO ORGANIZE THE NEW GOVERNMENT.

    THE GOVERNMENT CRISIS BEGAN LAST MONTH WHEN LONG-SERVING PRIME MINISTER VACLAV KLAUS RESIGNED IN A FUND-RAISING SCANDAL. HE WAS HIGHLY REGARDED IN THE WEST FOR MAKING THE CZECH REPUBLIC A LEADER IN THE TRANSFORMATION TO A MARKET ECONOMY. BUT HIS REPUTATION DIMMED CONSIDERABLY OVER THE PAST YEAR AMID A CURRENCY DEVALUATION, ECONOMIC SLOWDOWN AND A REASSESSMENT OF WHAT HAD ONCE BEEN CONSIDERED A MODEL PRIVATIZATION PROGRAM.

    MR. KLAUS WON STRONG SUPPORT FROM HIS PARTY SUNDAY, BUT IN AN OPINION POLL PUBLISHED A FEW DAYS EARLIER, THREE-QUARTERS OF THOSE SURVEYED SAID HE SHOULD LEAVE POLITICS. (SIGNED)
    NEB/ART/JWH
    16-Dec-97 11:43 AM EST (1643 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [07] EURO STOCKS (S-ONLY) BY PAUL FRANCUCH (LONDON)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224200
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: STOCK MARKETS IN WESTERN EUROPE POSTED SOLID GAINS AT THE CLOSE OF TRADING TUESDAY. WE GET THE FINAL MARKET FIGURES IN THIS REPORT FROM LONDON AND PAUL FRANCUCH.

    TEXT: PRE-HOLIDAY OPTIMISM AND BETTER MARKET PERFORMANCE IN THE FAR EAST WERE AMONG THE REASONS WHY EUROPEAN BOURSES POSTED SOLID GAINS TUESDAY.

    HERE IN LONDON, THE "FINANCIAL TIMES" 100 CONTINUED ITS UPWARD MOVE, GAINING ALMOST 82-POINTS AT THE CLOSE. THE PARIS "CAC 40" STOCK INDEX ADDED TWO-PERCENT IN VALUE WITH A 74-POINT RISE. GERMANY'S EARLY-DAY TRADING ON THE "DAX 30" CLOSED UP 24-POINTS, BUT COMPUTER TRADING LATER DROVE THE DAX UP AN EXTRA 121-POINTS AS THE DOLLAR FIRMED AGAINST THE MARK.

    CURRENCY TRADING HAD THE U-S DOLLAR UP ABOUT A PFENNIG AGAINST THE GERMAN MARK AND UP A FRACTION OF A CENT AGAINST THE BRITISH POUND.

    GOLD IN LONDON ADDED 70-CENTS IN VALUE. THE CLOSING FIX WAS SET AT 285-DOLLARS-55 CENTS AN OUNCE. (SIGNED)
    NEB/PCF/RAE
    16-Dec-97 1:36 PM EST (1836 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [08] NATO / BOSNIA (S) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224188
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: NATO FOREIGN MINISTERS MEETING IN BRUSSELS HAVE SENT THEIR MILITARY PLANNERS FOUR OPTIONS FOR THE FUTURE OF THE NATO-LED FORCES IN BOSNIA. RON PEMSTEIN REPORTS FROM BRUSSELS, SECRETARY OF STATE MADELEINE ALBRIGHT HAS CHALLENGED THE EUROPEANS TO CONTRIBUTE MORE FOR LOCAL POLICE.

    TEXT: SECRETARY OF STATE ALBRIGHT TOLD HER FELLOW MINISTERS THE UNITED STATES IS CONTRIBUTING 90-PERCENT OF THE FUNDS NEEDED TO TRAIN AND EQUIP THE BOSNIAN POLICE. SHE SAID THE EUROPEANS MUST SHARE THE BURDEN MORE EQUALLY IF THEY WANT THE U-S CONGRESS TO SUPPORT THE PEACE PROCESS IN BOSNIA.

    NATO OFFICIALS COUNTER THE EUROPEANS ARE TAKING A GREATER SHARE OF THE TASKS IN OTHER AREAS IN BOSNIA, INCLUDING 70 TO 80-PERCENT OF THE TROOPS. THE MINISTERS AGREED TO HAVE THEIR MILITARY PLANNERS CONSIDER FOUR OPTIONS FOR NATO AFTER THE JUNE DEADLINE FOR THE CURRENT FORCE.

    TWO OF THE OPTIONS ARE MOST UNLIKELY. ONE IS TO WITHDRAW ALL THE FORCES, THE OTHER IS TO LEAVE THEM THE SAME. THE OTHER OPTIONS ARE TO HAVE SMALLER FORCES EITHER WITH A STRICTLY MILITARY ROLE OR A FORCE THAT PERFORMS CIVILIAN TASKS AS WELL.

    THE MILITARY PLANNERS ARE EXPECTED TO REPORT BACK TO THE ALLIANCE BY LATE JANUARY AND NATO IS EXPECTED TO DECIDE ON THE NEXT STEP BY MARCH. (SIGNED)
    NEB/RAE
    16-Dec-97 10:57 AM EST (1557 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [09] NATO MINISTERS UPDATE (L) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224205
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:
    /// RE-RUNING W/MUST CORRECT IN THE ACT AND IN FIRST LINE OF LAST GRAPH ///

    INTRO: NATO FOREIGN MINISTER HAVE MET IN BRUSSELS AND HAVE TAKEN SOME DECISIONS THAT WILL DETERMINE THE FUTURE OF THE ALLIANCE IN 1998 AND BEYOND. V-O-A'S CORRESPONDENT RON PEMSTEIN REPORTS FROM BRUSSELS.

    TEXT: A CONTINUED NATO-LED MILITARY FORCE IN BOSNIA HAS TAKEN ANOTHER STEP FORWARD AT THIS MINISTERIAL MEETING. SO HAS THE MEMBERSHIP PLANS OF POLAND, HUNGARY AND THE CZECH REPUBLIC.

    THE NATO MINISTERS HAVE GIVEN THEIR MILITARY PLANNERS FOUR OPTIONS TO DISCUSS IN LATE JANUARY. THEIR AMBASSADORS WILL DISCUSS THEM IN FEBRUARY AND DECIDE ON THE NEW FORCE FOR BOSNIA IN MARCH. NATO COMMANDER, GENERAL WES CLARK, TOLD THE MINISTERS A NEW FORCE WILL REQUIRE "BOOTS ON THE GROUND". IN OTHER WORDS, THAT MEANS INFANTRY TROOPS BECAUSE AIR POWER CANNOT MAINTAIN A FRAGILE PEACE IN BOSNIA.

    TWO OF THE OPTIONS HAVE LITTLE CHANCE OF BEING ADOPTED. ONE IS TO WITHDRAW THE CURRENT FORCE WHEN THE MANDATE EXPIRES IN JUNE. ANOTHER IS TO MAINTAIN THE STATUS QUO OF 34 THOUSAND TROOPS. THAT LEAVES EITHER A REDUCED FORCE WITH EITHER A STRICTLY MILITARY MISSION OR A FORCE WITH AN ADDITIONAL CIVILIAN ROLE SUCH AS BUILDING BRIDGES OR RETURNING REFUGEES HOME.

    SECRETARY OF STATE MADELEINE ALBRIGHT TOLD THE MINISTERS IN THEIR CLOSED MEETING THAT THE UNITED STATES CANNOT CONTINUE PAYING 90 PERCENT OF THE COST OF MAINTAINING LOCAL POLICE FORCES IN BOSNIA. SHE SAYS A LARGER EUROPEAN ROLE IS VITAL TO MAINTAINING THE CONFIDENCE OF THE AMERICAN CONGRESS IN THE BOSNIA PEACE PROCESS.

    NATO OFFICIALS COUNTER THAT EUROPEAN COUNTRIES CONTRIBUTE 70 TO 80 PERCENT OF THE TROOPS AND EACH COUNTRY MAKES ITS OWN CONTRIBUTION. THE EUROPEANS HAVE LET IT BE KNOWN THEY WILL NOT REMAIN IN BOSNIA UNLESS THE UNITED STATES MAINTAINS A TROOP PRESENCE.

    IN ANOTHER MOVE TOWARD 1998, THE 16 FOREIGN MINISTERS SIGNED THE DOCUMENTS OF MEMBERSHIP PROCEDURES WITH THE FOREIGN MINISTERS OF POLAND, HUNGARY AND THE CZECH REPUBLIC. THIS SETS THE STAGE FOR THE 16 NATO PARLIAMENTS TO RATIFY CHANGES TO THE WASHINGTON TREATY. IF ALL AGREE, THE THREE COUNTRIES WILL BECOME NEW NATO MEMBERS IN APRIL, 1999.

    SECRETARY OF STATE ALBRIGHT TOLD THE MINISTERS APPROVAL BY THE UNITED STATES SENATE CANNOT BE TAKEN FOR GRANTED.

    ///ALBRIGHT ACT///

    IN THE UNITED STATES, I CERTAINLY DO NOT HAVE THE FINAL WORD ON NATO ENLARGEMENT A-N-D N-E-I-T-H-E-R D-O-E-S P-R-E-S-I-D-E-N-T C-L-I-N-T-O-N. THE FINAL WORD BELONGS TO THE MEMBERS OF THE UNITED STATES SENATE AND THE CITIZENS THAT THEY REPRESENT. WHILE THE DEBATE HAS BEGUN AND MANY MEMBERS OF CONGRESS FROM BOTH POLITICAL PARTIES HAVE EMBRACED THE GOALS OF THIS EFFORT, I DO NOT TAKE APPROVAL FOR GRANTED AND IF WE ARE SUCCESSFUL FOR OUR FUTURE ALLIES E-V-E-N T-H-A-T IT WILL NOT BE AN END BUT A BEGINNING.

    ///END ACT///

    SHE ALSO TOLD THE MINISTERS NOT TO RAISE EXPECTATIONS ABOUT THE NEXT WAVE OF ENLARGEMENT BY MAKING SPECIFIC COMMITMENTS RIGHT NOW TO PROSPECTIVE MEMBERS.

    SEVERAL COUNTRIES, NOTABLY FRANCE AND ITALY, FAVORED ROMANIA AND SLOVENIA IN THIS ROUND AND THEY MAINTAIN THAT SUPPORT FOR THE NEXT ROUND OF ENLARGEMENT.

    THE ACCESSION D-O-C-U-M-E-N-T-S WERE NOT THE ONLY SIGN OF A NEW NATO. UKRAINE AND NATO HELD THE FIRST MEETING OF THEIR JOINT COMMISSION TO DECIDE ON A WORK PLAN FOR 1998. SECRETARY GENERAL JAVIER SOLANA SAYS A PROMINENT ELEMENT WILL BE THEIR JOINT WORKING GROUP ON DEFENSE REFORM. THE GROUP WILL FOCUS ON CIVIL-MILITARY RELATIONS AND BRIEF UKRAINIAN OFFICIALS ABOUT NATO'S DEFENSE PLANNING AND BUDGETING. THE SECOND MEETING OF THE NATO-RUSSIAN COUNCIL WILL BE HELD HERE ON WEDNESDAY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/RP/GKT/PT
    16-Dec-97 3:30 PM EST (2030 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [10] NATO/ENLARGEMENT (S) BY RON PEMSTEIN (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224195
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: POLAND, HUNGARY, AND THE CZECH REPUBLIC HAVE SIGNED THEIR LETTERS OF ACCESSION WITH THE FOREIGN MINISTERS OF NATO TO TAKE THEIR NEXT STEP TOWARD NATO MEMBERSHIP. CORRESPONDENT RON PEMSTEIN REPORTS FROM BRUSSELS.

    TEXT: THE STAGE IS SET FOR THE 16 NATO PARLIAMENTS TO RATIFY THE THREE NEW MEMBERS OF NATO. THE FOREIGN MINISTERS OF POLAND, HUNGARY, AND THE CZECH REPUBLIC HAVE SIGNED THE DOCUMENTS THAT ESTABLISH THE PROCEDURES FOR NATO MEMBERSHIP.

    NATO SECRETARY GENERAL JAVIER SOLANA SAYS THE CEREMONY IS A SIGN OF NATO'S TRANSFORMATION AND HOW FAR THE ALLIANCE HAS OVERCOME THE DIVISION OF EUROPE. ALL 16 NATO MINISTERS SIGNED THE DOCUMENTS IN RESPONSE. UNDER THE CURRENT SCHEDULE, THE THREE COUNTRIES ARE TO BECOME NATO MEMBERS IN APRIL, 1999 ONCE ALL 16 PARLIAMENTS RATIFY THE CHANGES IN THE NATO TREATY.

    SECRETARY OF STATE MADELEINE ALBRIGHT TOLD THE MINISTERS THE U-S SENATE HAS THE FINAL WORD ON AMERICAN RATIFICATION AND SHE DOES NOT TAKE APPROVAL FOR GRANTED.

    THE MINISTERS ALSO COMMITTED THEMSELVES TO LOOK AT FURTHER ENLARGEMENT IN 1999. SECRETARY OF STATE ALBRIGHT SAYS NO COMMITMENTS SHOULD BE GIVEN NOW ABOUT THE NEXT NEW MEMBERS. (SIGNED)
    NEB/RAE
    16-Dec-97 12:14 PM EST (1714 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [11] NY ECON WRAP (L ONLY) BY JOE CHAPMAN (NEW YORK)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-224213
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: STOCK PRICES IN NEW YORK CLOSED UP ABOUT NEARLY ONE PERCENT TODAY (TUESDAY). V-O-A'S JOE CHAPMAN REPORTS FROM NEW YORK.

    TEXT: STOCKS ON WALL STREET RALLIED MODESTLY FOR A SECOND STRAIGHT DAY. THE WIDELY-FOLLOWED DOW JONES INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE WAS UP 54 POINTS AT 79-HUNDRED-76 WHILE THE MORE REPRESENTATIVE STANDARD AND POOR'S 500 WAS UP FIVE POINTS AT 968.

    ANALYSTS SAY HIGH TECHNOLOGY STOCKS LED A GENERALLY POSITIVE DAY ON THE EXCHANGES. LAST WEEK, AMERICAN STOCK EXCHANGES MOVED SHARPLY DOWNWARD BECAUSE OF SELLING PRESSURE ON THE SAME HIGH TECHNOLOGY SECTOR.

    THE U-S CENTRAL BANK HAS DECIDED TO LEAVE SHORT TERM INTEREST RATES UNCHANGED. ALTHOUGH U-S GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS REPORTED THE NUMBER OF NEW HOUSING STARTS SHOWED AN UNEXPECTED INCREASE, CONSUMER PRICES ROSE SLIGHTLY LESS THAN EXPECTED.

    ECONOMISTS SAY THE U-S ECONOMY CONTINUES TO GROW AT A HEALTHY PACE WITHOUT AN INCREASE IN INFLATION. THAT THEY SAY, GAVE THE U-S CENTRAL BANK THE FREEDOM TO KEEP INTEREST RATES UNCHANGED AND AVOID ADDING TO ASIAN FINANCIAL PROBLEMS.

    /// REST OPT FOR LONG ///

    JOEL PRAKKEN, WHO HEADS A PRIVATE ECONOMIC CONSULTING FIRM, SAYS THE ASIAN FINANCIAL DIFFICULTIES WILL PROBABLY TAKE ONE HALF OF ONE PERCENT OFF THE U-S ECONOMY'S GROWTH RATE IN EACH OF THE NEXT TWO YEARS.

    MR. PRAKKEN SAYS THE ASIAN ECONOMIC PROBLEMS ARE HELPING TO KEEP THE U-S ECONOMY FROM OVERHEATING, RELIEVING PRESSURE ON THE CENTRAL BANK TO RAISE INTEREST RATES.

    ///PRAKKEN ACT//

    WITHOUT THE CURRENCY COLLAPSES THAT WILL WEAKEN OUR NET EXPORTS AND WITHOUT THE CORRECTIONS IN THE STOCK MARKET THAT CAN BE LAID AT LEAST IN PART TO DEVELOPMENTS IN ASIA, WE MIGHT HAVE HAD MORE ROBUST AGGREGATE DEMAND HERE IN THE UNITED STATES COMPELLING THE FEDERAL RESERVE (CENTRAL BANK) TO TIGHTEN INTEREST RATES.

    ///END ACT///

    WALL STREET ANALYSTS BELIEVE HIGH TECHNOLOGY FIRMS, ESPECIALLY THOSE IN CALIFORNIA, ARE MOST VULNERABLE TO THE ASIAN ECONOMIC CRISIS, BUT ONLY A SMALL PERCENTAGE OF AMERICAN EXPORTS GOES TO ASIA. ANALYSTS SAY SOME INVESTORS ARE SHOPPING FOR BARGAINS NOW THAT HIGH TECHNOLOGY STOCKS HAVE FALLEN IN PRICE. (SIGNED) NEB/NY/JMC/LSF/PT
    16-Dec-97 4:40 PM EST (2140 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [12] TUESDAY'S EDITORIALS BY ANDREW N. GUTHRIE (WASHINGTON)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=U-S EDITORIAL DIGEST
    NUMBER=6-10490
    TELEPHONE=619-3335
    EDITOR=ASSIGNMENTS
    CONTENT=

    ///// ED'S: PERISHABLE MATERIAL, DATED AFTER 10 PM E-S-T /////

    INTRO: THE NUMBER ONE TOPIC IN MANY NEWSPAPERS THIS TUESDAY, AS WE NEAR THE CHRISTMAS HOLIDAY, IS PRESIDENT CLINTON'S APPOINTMENT OF A NEW MAN TO HEAD THE CIVIL RIGHTS SECTION OF THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT. ANOTHER POPULAR TOPIC IS THE APPARENT THAW IN IRAN'S RELATIONS WITH THE WEST.

    OTHER SUBJECTS GETTING ATTENTION INCLUDE: CHRISTMAS COMES TO CUBA, IF ONLY FOR A YEAR; THE SOUTH KOREAN ELECTION; AND A CHANGING POLICY ON NUCLEAR WARFARE TAKING INTO ACCOUNT POST-COLD WAR REALITIES. NOW, HERE WITH A CLOSER LOOK, INCLUDING SOME EXCERPTS IS __________________ AND TODAY'S EDITORIAL DIGEST.

    TEXT: THE INTERIM APPOINTMENT OF CALIFORNIA LAWYER BILL LANN LEE AS ACTING HEAD OF THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT'S IMPORTANT CIVIL RIGHTS DIVISION, WITHOUT SENATE CONFIRMATION, IS BEING HAILED BY MOST PAPERS AS A GOOD MOVE ON THE PART OF PRESIDENT CLINTON. IN PORTLAND, "THE OREGONIAN" SAYS -- WITH [THE] APPOINTMENT, BILL LANN LEE CAN FINALLY SHOW HOW HE WILL DO THE JOB.

    VOICE: [MR.] LEE, BY ALL EVIDENCE, POSSES FINE QUALIFICATIONS FOR THE JOB. THE SON OF CHINESE IMMIGRANTS, HE WAS AN EFFECTIVE CIVIL RIGHTS LAWYER FOR 23 YEARS ...THE 'ACTING' TITLE GETS [MR.] LEE ON THE JOB DESPITE SENATE REPUBLICANS' REFUSAL TO SEND HIS NOMINATION AS ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL FOR CIVIL RIGHTS TOT HE FULL SENATE FOR A VOTE. [MR.] CLINTON SAID HE STILL HOPED FOR THAT VOTE AFTER THE SENATE AND PUBLIC HAD SEEN [MR.] LEE'S ON-THE-JOB PERFORMANCE, BUT WITHOUT THAT VOTE, [MR.] LEE COULD STAY ON THE JOB UNTIL THE END OF [PRESIDENT] CLINTON'S TERM. ... NOW [MR.] LEE HAS A CHANCE TO P;ROVE HIMSELF TO THE SENATE AND THE PUBLIC.

    TEXT: NOT ALL PAPERS ARE PLEASED HOWEVER, AND "THE WALL STREET JOURNAL" RESORTS TO SARCASM AS IT CHIDES THE PRESIDENT OVER THE APPOINTMENT.

    VOICE: MAYBE THE ONLY SENSIBLE THING TO DO FOR THE NEXT THREE YEARS IS ACCORD THE ENTIRE CLINTON GOVERNMENT 'ACTING' STATUS. ... WHEN YOU THINK ABOUT IT, THE STATUS OF 'ACTING' THIS OR THAT IS JUST ABOUT A PERFECT METAPHOR FOR THIS ADMINISTRATION. 'ACTING' MEANS ALMOST, SORT OF, KIND OF, NOT QUITE, LIKE ... 'ACTING' MEANS ...THE PRESIDENT ... COULDN'T GET BILL LANN LEE THROUGH THE [SENATE] CONFIRMATION PROCESS [BUT SAID] ... HE WOULD [HE WOULD] TRY AGAIN NEXT YEAR BUT, OH BY THE WAY, 'HE HAS THE FULL AUTHORITY OF THE OFFICE.' ... THE DANGER IN ALL THIS IS THAT OUR GOVERNMENT, RATHER THAN WHAT WE RECOGNIZE AS CHECKS AND BALANCES, BECOMES A CHAOTIC FREE-FOR-ALL.

    TEXT: NOR DOES "THE LOS ANGELES TIMES" LIKE THE COMPROMISE WITH THE SENATE THE PRESIDENT CHOSE, SAYING IT -- FALLS WORRISOMELY SHORT OF PUTTING THE FULL AUTHORITY OF THE JOB INTO THE HAND OF THE HIGHLY QUALIFIED VETERAN ATTORNEY. "THE NEW YORK TIMES" ON THE OTHER HAND, IS GLAD HE IS IN THE JOB, NOTING -- AS THE ACTING HEAD OF THE DIVISION, HE LACKS THE FULL LEGITIMACY OF SOMEONE CONFIRMED BY THE SENATE. BUT HE HAS THE WEIGHT OF THE WHITE HOUSE BEHIND HIM, /// OPT /// AND MR. CLINTON HAS ALSO PROMISED TO RESUBMIT HIS NAME FOR CONFIRMATION NEXT YEAR. THAT WAS A WELCOME SHOW OF SUPPORT. /// END OPT ///

    TURNING TO THE TOP INTERNATIONAL TOPIC, IN THE MINDS OF SEVERAL PAPERS, IS THE APPARENT MODERATING STANCE OF IRAN'S NEW LEADER IN RELATIONS WITH THE WEST. "THE BOSTON GLOBE" MAKES THAT TOPICS ITS LEAD EDITORIALS, SUGGESTING:

    VOICE: AN OVERT PROPOSAL FROM IRAN'S PRESIDENT MOHAMMAD KHATAMI FOR A DIALOGUE WITH WASHINGTON SHOULD BE TAKEN AT FACE VALUE AND EXPLORED. THE MOST SALIENT DANGER IN A POSITIVE AMERICAN RESPONSE WOULD NOT BE TO U-S INTERESTS BUT TO [MR.] KHATAMI'S STANDING AMONG THE MILITANTS WITHIN HIS OWN ISLAMIC REPUBLIC. // OPT // ... [MR.] KHATAMI, WHO RECEIVED 70 PERCENT OF THE VOTE, IS BANKING ON PUBLIC SUPPORT. // END OPT // DESPITE THE CONSTANT DENOUNCING OF THE UNITED STATES BY IRANIAN HARDLINERS -- OR PERHAPS BECAUSE OF IT -- MOST IRANIANS ARE REPORTED TO HAVE FAVORABLE VIEWS OF THE UNITED STATES. ... DIFFICULT AS IT MAY BE, THE DIALOGUE PROPOSED BY [PRESIDENT] KHATAMI STANDS TO YIELD CONSIDERABLE BENEFITS TO BOTH PARTIES.

    TEXT: "THE NEW YORK TIMES" IS ALSO PLEASED WITH THE LATEST THAW IF THAT IS WHAT IT IS -- BUT RECOMMENDS A CAUTIOUS APPROACH FOR THE GOVERNMENT.

    VOICE: PRESIDENT CLINTON WAS RIGHT ... TO WELCOME PRESIDENT ...KHATAMI'S ENCOURAGING CALL FOR A DIALOGUE WITH WASHINGTON, BUT THE WHITE HOUSE SHOULD NOT MISTAKE THE OVERTURE AS A SIGN THAT IRAN'S POWERFUL CLERICS HAVE ENDORSED A MORE PEACEFUL FOREIGN POLICY. THE JOURNEY BACK TO NORMAL RELATIONS WITH IRAN, IF IT UNFOLDS AT ALL, WILL BE SLOW AND CIRCUITOUS.

    // OPT //

    ...THE BENCHMARKS FOR BETTER RELATIONS WITH AMERICA ARE NO MYSTERY. IRAN MUST END ITS SUPPORT FOR TERRORIST GROUPS, STOP TRYING TO BUILD NUCLEAR WEAPONS AND CEASE TRYING TO DISRUPT THE MIDDLE EAST PEACE EFFORT. IT ALSO HAS TO GET OVER ITS ALLERGY TO THE UNITED STATES AND ITS IMPLACABLE HOSTILITY TO ISRAEL.

    TEXT: STILL WITH IRAN, "THE SUN" IN BALTIMORE HAS THESE THOUGHTS ON TEHRAN'S HOSTING OF THE ISLAMIC SUMMIT THE OTHER DAY.

    VOICE: THE SUMMIT ... OF THE ORGANIZATION OF THE ISLAMIC CONFERENCE IN TEHRAN WAS A TRIUMPH FOR ITS REVOLUTIONARY REGIME, MOCKING WASHINGTON'S FANTASY OF ISOLATING IRAN. EGYPT'S PRESENCE GAVE THAT U-S CLIENT ITS CLOSEST RELATIONS WITH REVOLUTIONARY IRAN SINCE IT GRANTED ASYLUM TO THE FLEEING SHAH IN 1979. THE VISIT OF CROWN PRINCE ABDULLAH OF SAUDI ARABIA HEALS RELATIONS DESPITE PRIVATE SAUDI ACCUSATIONS OF IRANIAN-SPONSORED TERRORISM.

    /// END OPT ///

    TEXT: IN OTHER DEVELOPMENTS, AND AS A PRELUDE TO THE MUCH-HERALDED NEW YEAR VISIT OF THE POPE, CUBA'S DICTATOR, FIDEL CASTRO HAS ANNOUNCED CHRISTMAS WILL BE CELEBRATED ON HIS COMMUNIST ISLAND FOR THIS YEAR ONLY. "THE MIAMI HERALD" HAS THIS RESPONSE.

    VOICE: MAKE NO MISTAKE. IN A STATE FAMOUS FOR ITS REPRESSION, ANY MOVE THAT MAY ALLOW ORDINARY CUBANS MORE SPACE TO PRACTICE RELIGION, EVEN IF FOR A DAY, IS A BLESSING. IT IS OUR SINCERE WISH THAT CUBANS SO INCLINED MAY FREELY JOIN THE BILLIONS WORLDWIDE CELEBRATING THE BIRTH OF CHRIST ON DECEMBER 25. ... THAT SAID, CONSIDER THE CONTEXT. ... NO ONE SHOULD FORGET HOW FIDEL CONTINUES SYSTEMATICALLY TO REPRESS THE CUBAN PEOPLE. TOKEN CONCESSIONS DO NOT A LEGITIMATE GOVERNMENT MAKE.

    TEXT: IN THE MIDST OF A FINANCIAL CRISIS, SOUTH KOREANS GO TO THE POLLS THIS WEEK TO CHOSE A NEW PRESIDENT, AND "THE LOS ANGELES TIMES" SAYS IT IS AN ELECTION WITH -- A CLOUD -- OVER IT.

    VOICE: // OPT // SOUTH KOREANS WILL GO TO THE POLLS THURSDAY FAR MORE WORRIED ABOUT THEIR ECONOMIC SECURITY THAN WHO THEIR NEXT PRESIDENT WILL BE, AND LITTLE ... THE TWO MAJOR CANDIDATES ARE SAYING HAS EASED THAT FEAR. // END OPT // NEITHER KIM DAE JUNG, THE LONGTIME OPPOSITION LEADER, NOR LEE HOI CHANG, A FORMER ADMINISTRATION FIGURE, HAS OUTLINED ANYTHING LIKE A COHERENT RESPONSE TO THE ECONOMIC DISASTER SHAKING THE COUNTRY. ... WHAT THE TIMES CRY OUT FOR IS A LEADER UNAFRAID TO CHALLENGE THE TRADITIONAL BASIS OF HIS SUPPORT ...

    TEXT: ON LONG ISLAND, "NEWSDAY" IS PLEASED ABOUT A MAJOR RE-THINKING OF U-S NUCLEAR WAR STRATEGY, TAKING INTO ACCOUNT THE REALITIES OF THE POST-COLD WAR WORLD.

    VOICE: UNDER NEW GUIDELINES ISSUED BY PRESIDENT ... CLINTON ... THE MISSION OF THE U-S NUCLEAR ARSENAL NOW IS TO DETER A NUCLEAR ATTACK, NOT TO COME OUT AHEAD IN SOME INDESCRIBABLY DEVASTATING NUCLEAR EXCHANGE. THIS UPDATE IS A WELCOME BOW TO REALITY ... // OPT // IT PUTS OFFICIAL FORCE BEHIND A BEDROCK AMERICAN CONVICTION ... THAT A NUCLEAR WAR CANNOT BE WON AND MUST NEVER BE FOUGHT. IT ACKNOWLEDGES THE REALITY THAT STEEP REDUCTIONS IN THE NUMBER OF U-S AND RUSSIAN WARHEADS MAKE IT BOTH IMPOSSIBLE AND UNNECESSARY TO MAINTAIN A FACADE OF NUCLEAR WAR-FIGHTING CAPABILITY. // END OPT

    //

    TEXT: ON THAT HOPEFUL NOTE, WE CONCLUDE THIS BRIEF SAMPLING OF EDITORIALS FROM TUESDAY'S U-S PRESS.
    NEB/ANG/RAE
    16-Dec-97 10:37 AM EST (1537 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [13] YEARENDER/BALKANS '97 BY ART CHIMES (PRAGUE)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=BACKGROUND REPORT
    NUMBER=5-38420
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: TWO YEARS AFTER THE HISTORIC PEACE AGREEMENT SIGNED IN THE AMERICAN MIDWEST CITY OF DAYTON OHIO, THERE HAS BEEN NO SIGNIFICANT OUTBREAK OF HOSTILITIES IN THE FORMER YUGOSLAVIA. BUT THE SITUATION THERE REMAINS UNSETTLED, AS WE HEAR FROM V-O-A CORRESPONDENT ART CHIMES.

    TEXT: ARMORED VEHICLES FROM THE NATO-LED STABILIZATION FORCE PATROL THE ROADS OF BOSNIA AND MAN CHECKPOINTS ALONG THE INTER-ENTITY BOUNDARY LINE BETWEEN SERB AND MUSLIM-CROAT AREAS. IN A SENSE, THE TROOPS FROM EGYPT, FRANCE, GERMANY, BRITAIN, THE UNITED STATES AND OTHER COUNTRIES HAVE DONE THEIR JOB: THE DAYTON AGREEMENT MARKED ITS SECOND ANNIVERSARY IN NOVEMBER IN A RELATIVELY PEACEFUL COUNTRY. BUT THE ABSENCE OF FIGHTING SCARCELY MEANS THE COUNTRY IS AT PEACE.

    ON THE OCCASION OF THAT SECOND ANNIVERSARY OF THE DAYTON AGREEMENT, THE WESTERN POWERS' HIGH REPRESENTATIVE, CARLOS WESTENDORP, TOLD REPORTERS THERE HAS BEEN REAL PROGRESS IN IMPLEMENTING PEACE AND STABILITY. BUT HE SAID MORE COULD HAVE BEEN ACCOMPLISHED.

    // WESTENDORP ACTUALITY //

    THE LIST OF ACHIEVEMENTS OF THE LAST TWO YEARS COULD HAVE BEEN MUCH LONGER. (BUT) RELUCTANCE BY THE AUTHORITIES IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA TO COOPERATE FULLY HAS PREVENTED PROGRESS ON MANY ASPECTS OF THE CONSTRUCTION OF A CIVIL AND DEMOCRATIC SOCIETY.

    // END ACTUALITY //

    CONSIDER THE REFUGEES, FOR INSTANCE. SOME OF THE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF WARTIME REFUGEES HAVE RETURNED HOME, BUT MOST ARE AFRAID TO -- WITH GOOD REASON. OF THE SMALL NUMBERS OF DISPLACED PERSONS WHO HAVE TRIED TO GO BACK TO AREAS NOW DOMINATED BY ANOTHER ETHNIC GROUP, MANY -- IF NOT MOST -- HAVE BEEN INTIMIDATED INTO LEAVING, SOMETIMES VIOLENTLY SO. //OPT// ROUTINE TRAVEL IS COMPLICATED BY SERB AUTHORITIES WHO ROUTINELY HARASS DRIVERS WITH CROAT OR MUSLIM LICENSE PLATES, AND VICE VERSA. //END OPT//

    IT NOW SEEMS UNLIKELY THAT NATO-LED SOLDIERS WILL SIMPLY LEAVE NEXT JUNE, WHEN THEIR TOUR IS SCHEDULED TO END. VIRTUALLY EVERY INFORMED OBSERVER AGREES THAT A PULLOUT BY THE WESTERN POWERS WOULD LEAD TO CHAOS AND VIOLENCE, AND PERHAPS ANOTHER BALKAN WAR. AT YEAR'S END, NATO DEFENSE MINISTERS SEEMED FINALLY TO ACKNOWLEDGE THAT, AND AGREED TO CONSIDER A VARIETY OF APPROACHES TO THE PROBLEM. EVEN THE CLINTON ADMINISTRATION, WHICH HAS OPPOSED AN INDEFINITE DEPLOYMENT, NOW AGREES A LONGER MISSION WILL PROBABLY BE NEEDED.

    //OPT//

    IN NEIGHBORING YUGOSLAVIA THERE IS INCREASING CONCERN ABOUT KOSOVO PROVINCE -- PART OF SERBIA WHERE ALBANIANS ARE A 90-PERCENT MAJORITY, BUT ARE DOMINATED BY THE SERBIANS. PROTESTS BY ETHNIC ALBANIAS HAVE MOSTLY BEEN PEACEFUL, BUT A GROUP CALLED THE "KOSOVO LIBERATION ARMY" HAS CLAIMED ATTACKS ON SERBIAN AUTHORITIES AND ALLEGED COLLABORATORS. ANALYSTS SAY KOSOVO HAS THE POTENTIAL FOR BECOMING THE NEXT BALKAN BATTLEGROUND. //END OPT//

    ON THE POLITICAL FRONT, MEANWHILE, A FLURRY OF ELECTIONS IN BOSNIA, SERBIA AND MONTENEGRO HAS DONE LITTLE TO CONSOLIDATE DEMOCRACY IN THE AREA. IN MONTENEGRO, A REFORMIST CANDIDATE, MILO DJUKANOVIC, IS DUE TO TAKE OFFICE IN MID-JANUARY AS PRESIDENT OF FEDERAL YUGOSLAVIA'S SMALLER REPUBLIC. IN DOMINANT SERBIA, HOWEVER, REPEATED VOTING HAS FAILED TO ELECT A PRESIDENT, BUT HARDLINE NATIONALISTS HAVE WON THE MOST SUPPORT. IN BOSNIA, HARDLINERS CONTINUE TO HAVE STRONG SUPPORT AFTER RECENT PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS IN THE BOSNIAN SERB REPUBLIC. AND IN EARLIER LOCAL ELECTIONS THROUGHOUT BOSNIA, THE REAL TEST WILL BE WHETHER ELECTED MINORITY OFFICIALS WILL BE ABLE TO FUNCTION, ONCE THEY ASSUME OFFICE. (SIGNED)
    NEB/ART/PCF
    16-Dec-97 8:52 AM EST (1352 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [14] YEARENDER: RUSSIA POLITICS '97 (RE-ISSUE) BY MICHELE KELEMEN (MOSCOW)

    DATE=12/16/97
    TYPE=BACKGROUND REPORT
    NUMBER=5-38418
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    ///// EDS: REISSUES WITH SUGGESTED OPTS /////

    INTRO: IN MANY WAYS, 1997 WAS A RELATIVELY CALM YEAR IN RUSSIA. A PEACE AGREEMENT WAS REACHED WITH CHECHNYA AND IN MOSCOW, THE GOVERNMENT AND PARLIAMENT SHOWED SOME HESITANT SIGNS OF COMPROMISE AND RECONCILIATION. BUT BEHIND THE SCENES ANOTHER WAR WAS BREWING. IT WAS A BATTLE AMONG TOP BANKERS. AS V-O-A MOSCOW CORRESPONDENT MICHELE KELEMEN REPORTS, THAT BATTLE HAS HELPED SHAPE DOMESTIC POLITICS.

    TEXT: A FORMIDABLE GROUP OF BUSINESS TYCOONS JOINED FORCES DURING RUSSIA'S 1996 PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN TO HELP BRING BORIS YELTSIN BACK TO OFFICE. BUT IN 1997, THE BANKERS BEGAN TO BATTLE EACH OTHER FOR BIG STAKES IN RUSSIA'S PRIVATIZATION PROGRAM. THE MAN IN CHARGE OF REFORMS, FIRST DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER ANATOLY CHUBAIS, WAS THE TARGET OF MUCH CRITICISM. IN JULY, THE RUSSIAN BANK "ONEXIMBANK" TEAMED UP WITH WESTERN INVESTORS AND WON AN IMPORTANT AUCTION FOR A MAJOR STAKE IN RUSSIA'S TELECOMMUNICATIONS HOLDING COMPANY. MANY WESTERN ANALYSTS SAID THE AUCTION WAS FAIR, BUT THE LOSING BIDDERS SAW THINGS DIFFERENTLY. THEY CLAIMED VLADIMIR POTANIN, THE HEAD OF ONEXIMBANK, WAS TOO CLOSE TO THE GOVERNMENT. THEN, THE WAR OF THE BANKERS BROKE OUT. AS SERGEI KOLMAKOV OF THE THINK-TANK "FOND POLITIKA" SAYS, "THIS YEAR WE LEARNED HOW CLOSELY MONEY AND POLITICS ARE LINKED IN RUSSIA."

    /// KOLMAKOV ACT ///

    IT IS DIFFICULT NOW TO MAKE A LINE BETWEEN THE POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC/FINANCIAL ELITES. //OPT// IT IS A COMBINATION. THE STATE BUDGET FOR EXAMPLE IS TOO IMPORTANT FOR RUSSIAN ECONOMIC STRUCTURES, FINANCIAL STRUCTURES AND SO ON. THE STATE STILL, IN SPITE OF PRIVATIZATION, HAS A HUGE SAY IN ALL OF BUSINESS. FROM THAT POINT OF VIEW, ///END OPT// RUSSIAN BUSINESS IS TOO POLITICIZED. AND BECAUSE OF THAT AND BECAUSE THE FUTURE POLITICAL BATTLES, THE INVESTMENT IN MASS MEDIA WAS ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS FOR (THE) RUSSIAN ECONOMIC ELITE.

    /// END ACT ////

    BANKING TYCOONS VLADIMIR GUSINKSY AND BORIS BEREZOVSKY ARE AMONG THOSE WHO HAVE MAJOR STAKES IN RUSSIAN NEWSPAPERS AND TELEVISION STATIONS. WHEN THE POLITICAL BATTLES HEATED UP, MORE AND MORE REPORTS IN THEIR MEDIA EMPIRES WERE AIMED AGAINST ANATOLY CHUBAIS AND HIS REFORMIST TEAM. NIKOLAI PETROV OF THE MOSCOW CARNEGIE CENTER SAYS IT WAS APPARENT THAT JOURNALISTS WERE WRITING WHAT THE BANKERS WANTED.

    /// PETROV ACT ///

    JOURNALISTS ARE NOT INDEPENDENT IN REALITY, AND THEY ARE PLAYING (A) CONCRETE POLITICAL ROLE. THEY ARE PAID BY CONCRETE POLITICAL FORCES -- BY BANKS. //OPT// NOW WHEN ALL MASS MEDIA ARE OWNED BY THIS OR THAT FINANCIAL/INDUSTRIAL STRUCTURE AND SHOWING EVERY DAY THAT THEY ARE NOT INDEPENDENT AND ARE REFLECTING THE OPINIONS OF THIS OR THAT BANKER, THEIR ROLE AND THEIR INFLUENCE IN SOCIETY BECAME RATHER LOW. //END OPT//

    //// END ACT ///

    THE MEDIA ATTACK ON MR. CHUBAIS BECAME SO INTENSE THAT, AT ONE POINT, PRESIDENT YELTSIN PERSONALLY INTERVENED AND SAT DOWN WITH THE BANKERS TO TELL THEM TO STOP. MR. YELTSIN CLEARLY SIDED WITH MR. CHUBAIS AND EVEN HEEDED HIS CALL FOR THE BANKER, BORIS BEREZOVSKY'S OUSTER FROM RUSSIA'S SECURITY COUNCIL. BUT, DAYS LATER, WHEN MR. CHUBAIS WAS HIMSELF TIED TO A SCANDAL, MR. YELTSIN DECIDED THE FIRST DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER COULD NOT ESCAPE PUNISHMENT. MR. CHUBAIS WAS STRIPPED OF HIS SECOND TITLE, THAT OF FINANCE MINISTER. SEVERAL MEMBERS OF THE CHUBAIS TEAM ALSO LOST THEIR JOBS AFTER RECEIVING LARGE PAYMENTS FOR AN AS-YET UNPUBLISHED BOOK ABOUT PRIVATIZATION. THE PUBLISHING HOUSE THAT PAID THE BOOK ADVANCE WAS TIED TO ONEXIMBANK, THE WINNER OF THE JULY TELECOMMUNICATIONS AUCTION.

    REPORTER ALEXANDER MINKIN BROKE STORY ON THE BOOK SCANDAL. MANY ACCUSED HIM OF BEING BANKROLLED BY BUSINESS TYCOONS OUT FOR REVENGE. BUT MR. MINKIN IS ADAMANTLY DEFIANT. HE SAYS WHEN JOURNALISTS IN OTHER COUNTRIES REVEAL SCANDALS THEY ARE CONSIDERED HEROES. IN RUSSIA, HE SAYS,, THEY ARE ACCUSED OF PLAYING DIRTY POLITICS.

    /// MINKIN ACT IN RUSSIAN -- ESTABLISH AND FADE UNDER ////

    "I HAVE REPEATED IT A THOUSAND TIMES," SAYS MR. MINKIN. "WE ARE NOT TRYING TO MAKE THEM DIRTY, THEY ARE MAKING THEMSELVES DIRTY. WE ARE JUST TRYING TO SHED LIGHT."

    DIFFICULT TO KNOW WHOM TO BELIEVE? JUST THINK ABOUT RUSSIAN CITIZENS TRYING TO LEARN WHAT IS HAPPENING IN THIS CHAOTIC PERIOD OF TRANSITION. RUSSIANS WERE BOMBARDED THIS YEAR WITH VARIOUS OPINIONS FROM TELEVISION STATIONS AND NEWSPAPERS. EVEN TOP POLITICAL ANALYSTS SAY THEY HAVE TO READ AND COMPARE DOZENS OF PAPERS IN ORDER TO FIND THE FACTS.

    IT IS NO WONDER THEN THAT RUSSIANS SAY IT'S DIFFICULT TO FIND POLITICIANS THEY TRUST.

    THE BANKERS WAR OF 1997 CERTAINLY MADE AN IMPACT ON PUBLIC OPINION. BY THE END OF THE YEAR, THE SO-CALLED YOUNG REFORMERS ANATOLY CHUBAIS AND BORIS NEMTSOV BOTH HAD LOST POINTS IN THEIR POPULARITY RATINGS. THE MORE MODERATE PRIME MINISTER VICTOR CHERNOMYRDIN ENDS THE YEAR IN A STRONGER POSITION. (SIGNED)
    NEB/MLK/PCF
    16-Dec-97 8:23 AM EST (1323 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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