Newsweek Staff

Stories by Newsweek Staff

  • Eco-Activist Summer

    With few noisy clashes and a crowd of about 500, it was something less than the dramatic curtain raiser many had expected. But last week's antilogging demonstration at Louisiana-Pacific's Samoa mill, just west of Eureka, Calif. at least laid down the lines for "Redwood Summer"--a season of civil disobedience just beginning in the timber country of northern California. On one side of the road leading into the mill, supporters of the radical environmental group Earth First. "There's no time left to try to work through legal measures," demonstrator Chris Robinson said. "You also have to get out and do some grass-roots activism." On the other side, working people whose livelihoods depend on the logging business. Secretary Kim Lennon-Bailey clocked out of the Louisiana-Pacific mill around lunchtime, picked up a picket sign reading MY KIDS ARE MY FUTURE and joined the pro-logging, antiprotester contingent. "I believe in my job and I believe in this area," she said. ...
  • Hackers Of The World, Unite!

    As the Feds widen their crackdown on computer tampering, some pioneers of the industry have joined to defend freedom of the keyboard ...
  • Fine Art Or Foul?

    The Rev. Donald Wildmon stood one day in the Galleria dell' Accademia in Florence contemplating Michelangelo's "David." What he saw was a figure in white marble, towering 14 feet above him. What he felt was awe. He felt different the day he saw Andres Serrano's "Piss Christ," a photo of a plastic crucifix immersed in urine--and learned that the National Endowment for the Arts had indirectly supported the artist. "Congress has enough sense to give money to fund art, but they don't have enough sense to know what kind of art they are funding," he thought. "That's weirdo." ...
  • A Slow Slide Toward War?

    Civilians would have been the target," George Bush said last week, explaining his decision to break off talks with the Palestine Liberation Organization in the wake of a failed Palestinian terrorist raid on Israel's coastline. The suspension was meant to underscore U.S. abhorrence of terrorism. But it also reflected a deeper concern: in the tinderbox of the Middle East, such a raid could lead to conflagration. What if the May 30 attack had succeeded and taken scores of civilian lives? Would Israel take revenge by attacking Libya, an apparent sponsor of the raid? Would Libyan leader Muammar Kaddafi call on Iraqi President Saddam Hussein to keep his promise to retaliate on behalf of his Arab brothers? Iraq might launch just "a few missiles" against Israeli targets, says Israeli terrorism expert Ariel Merari. Israel would be forced to respond. "Then you have a war," Merari says. "In the Middle East ... when the atmosphere is so belligerent, you don't need much." ...
  • Someone's Last Hurrah

    The Communist Party official has six telephones on his desk, a traditional sign of rank in Moscow. They used to ring constantly with calls from the party's Central Committee. But no one there has called him in the three months since Mikhail Gorbachev began shifting power from the party to a new executive presidency. The official is so bitter about being cut out of the decision-making process that he breaks longstanding Soviet practice and criticizes his party leader by name to a foreign visitor. "Gorbachev is now a one-man show," he says. "He and a few personal advisers make all the decisions." The visitor asks for examples of botched decisions. "Show me where something is working right these days," the official replies. ...
  • Waiter! Get Me A Picture Phone And A Fax!

    It looks like the setting for a power lunch. But inside Electronic Cafe International in Santa Monica, Calif., you can get a lot more than a cup of espresso and a piece of quiche. How about a fax from India, or a teleconference call from London? Located in Santa Monica's 18th Street Arts Complex, Cafe International is more than an eatery; it's the latest wrinkle in global communications facilities. ...
  • Rjr Tries To Salvage Its Junk

    Was it only last year that financier Henry Kravis and his partners borrowed a whopping $28 billion to buy R JR Nabisco in the biggest leveraged buyout in history? It seems like an age--namely, the age of excessive debt. Now, only 17 months later, the landscape is littered with casualties of overborrowing--Robert Campeau, Merv Griffin, Donald Trump. Kravis, whose name became synonymous with leveraged buyouts in the go-go 1980s, seems determined to avoid the same fate. Adapting to the pay-as-you-go 1990s, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts is planning to put IWR on a sounder financial footing. The firm indicated that it would I plow $1 .7 billion of new equity into the food and tobacco giant and retire some $4 billion of high-yield junk bonds. Said a Shearson Lehman Hutton trader, "It's the official end of the junk-bond era." ...
  • A White-Male Lament

    You know us. We're everywhere and we drive you crazy. We turn up where you work, at parties and next to you in airplanes. We're the ones who debate the merits of leaf blowers, comparison shop for car polishes and file every warranty for every purchase. We're the ones who can't clap to the beat, who wear awkward smiles, the kind of guys you hope won't try to start a conversation. We're BMCWM--boring, middle-class white men. How did so many of us wind up so boring Well, we didn't ask to be this way. Being boring is a role thrust upon us. ...
  • A Home Away From Home

    Every morning except Sundays, Dorothy Frutiger kisses her husband, Dick, goodbye and watches as he boards the van to the Cedar Acres Adult Day Care Center in Janesville, Wis. It's a long drive--30 miles--and Dick spends the time chatting with the other passengers who are still able to respond. Lately, he's taken to consoling a younger man, an Alzheimer's victim like himself, who doesn't like the idea of adult day care. A lot of the conversation seems nonsensical; some sentences stop in midthought. But the effort helps keep their minds active. And what is the alternative? Though he's only 62, Dick Frutiger would be watching TV in a nursing home if not for Cedar Acres. "He gets better care there than he would at home," says Dorothy, 58, who works full time as a typesetter. ...
  • The Nixons Go For The Gold

    Richard and Pat Nixon met in 1938, when both landed parts in an amateur production of George S. Kaufman's "The Dark Tower." Watergate reporters Woodward and Bernstein later wrote that the Nixons had a loveless marriage. Maybe so, but last week they celebrated their 50th anniversary. It was a quiet family affair, the only social splash was made by the Nixon grandkids in the swimming pool.
  • Piece De Resistance

    On June 18,1940, Gen. Charles de Gaulle launched the valiant French Resistance movement with a stirring radio broadcast from London, urging French people to continue the struggle against the Nazi forces. Last week France marked the 50th anniversary of the broadcast with a startling temporary monument in Paris. A team of 21 artists painted a gigantic replica of the popular 1940s DucretetThomson radio and wrapped the canvas around the renowned Obelisk in the Place de la Concorde. World War II speeches poured from nearby speakers--and then the creation was dismantled, and the radio days were over.
  • Thoughts On Mayor Barry

    What do Genghis Khan, Richard Nixon, J. Edgar Hoover and D.C. Mayor Marion Barry have in common? We don't have all day, so I will tell you: they all were / are historic figures who did some good along with their much more famous bad and thus are a pain in the neck to analyze. ...
  • Silver-Haired Athletes Reaching For The Gold

    A male midlife crisis used to be a condition characterized by the pursuit of leggy showgirls and the wearing of toupees. No one would think of buying a ticket to see a man in such a pathetic state. But last week a 43-year-old Texan faced a truly compelling crisis--how to pitch to the best team in baseball, the Oakland Athletics. And he survived it in exemplary style: by hurling a no-hitter. The Rangers' Nolan Ryan is the oldest person ever to pull off that feat--but he is hardly the only middle-aged man to muscle his way into the sports pages of late. From California (where Mark Spitz, 40, is trying to swim his way into the 1992 Olympics) to New York (where jockey Angel Cordero, 47, boots home winners at Belmont Park), silver-haired athletes are going for the gold. Some, such as golfer Jack Nicklaus and bowler Earl Anthony, have dabbled in the senior circuit, a kind of parallel universe where everyone wears Sansabelt slacks. But despite what science says about the body converting...
  • No Bailout For Gorb?

    It now seems very unlikely that a "Second Marshall Plan" for the Soviet Union will be approved at next month's economic summit in Houston. At a final strategy session last week, West German foreign-policy adviser Horst Teltschik urged his fellow "sherpas"--the advisers from the United States, Canada, Japan, France, Britain, Italy and the European Community, who are carrying the load for summit planning--to back a $20 billion bailout for Mikhail Gorbachev. Bonn, Teltschik said, was willing to bear more than its share of the burden for payments to maintain Soviet troops in East Germany and credit guarantees for the crumbling Soviet economy. In Bonn's view, the plan would ensure Soviet support for keeping Germany in NATO--and help keep Gorbachev in control. Washington argued it couldn't afford the plan and the others argued that a heavy investment at this time would be risky because of uncertainty about Gorbachev's future.
  • A Wall Of Water Washes Through Ohio

    Nine-year-old Amber Colvin was playing cards with her friend Kerrie Trigg when the house began to fill up with water. It was late evening, and a series of rogue thunderstorms had just dumped five and a half inches of rain on the Ohio-West Virginia border region below Wheeling, W.Va. Wegee Creek, normally a placid stream, was rising to almost unbelievable heights, and Amber and Kerrie climbed into a bathtub for protection from the swirling water. Then the house collapsed. Before long, Amber found herself swept downstream into the Ohio River. Somehow she survived by clinging to two logs. "I had them for a long time," she said afterward. "I just drifted." ...
  • Aids The Next Ten Years

    A sense of crisis is hard to sustain. It thrives on earthquakes and tornadoes, plane crashes and terrorist bombings. But forces that kill people one at a time have away of fading into the psychic landscape. So, if you've stopped thinking of AIDS as an emergency, consider a few numbers. In 1984, when scientists identified the virus that causes the illness, fewer than 4,500 Americans had been stricken. Today more than 3,000 cases of AIDS are reported every month in this country; the total tops 130,000. An estimated 1 million Americans are infected with the virus--and by the end of the decade, most of those people will be sick. ...
  • The 'Slap Flap' Explained

    Remember Sondra Gotlieb? She's the wife of the former Canadian ambassador who became notorious when she slapped her social secretary during a 1986 embassy dinner for Prime Minister Brian Mulroney. (The secretary had told her seating arrangements had to be changed.) Now, in "Washington Rollercoaster," a gossipy account of her seven years on Embassy Row--so far available only in Canada--Gotlieb tells us the "slap flap" happened because she was exhausted, upset over a slight by Nancy Reagan and starved from dieting to fit into a new dress. Among other tidbits: she says publicly what much of Washington knew privately--former White House chief of staff Don Regan spread false rumors that the then national-security adviser Robert McFarlane was having an "adulterous affair."
  • Sparkle, Sparkle

    We all know Imelda Marcos was an Olympic shopper for shoes, but she also loved jewelry. She liked to sparkle so much, prosecutors at her New York trial alleged last week, that she spent $6,671,919 on jewelry between 1980 and 1986. The government contends the money she used was looted from the Philippine treasury and a government bank. Here's a list list what Imelda spent and where:Van Cleef & Arpels, $1,575,213; Fred Leighton, $1,015,247; J.S.S. Young, $825,000; Gaston Issert, $668,923; Cantabrican, $497,738; Cartier, $355,451; Bulgari, $344,250; Isi Fischzang, $314,550; A La Vieille Russie, $157,721; others, $917,826.
  • A Musical Homecoming

    The Marsalis family, which threatens to corner the jazz market the way the Hunts once tried to dominate silver, has a new project: "The Resolution of Romance," on which trumpeter Wynton pairs with his father, Ellis, a revered New Orleans pianist. Wynton says the new recording represents his coming to grips with the standard jazz repertoire. For father and son, the 21-song set is also a musical homecoming: it is the first time the two have recorded together.
  • A Split In Now

    The Illinois Senate race has split the National Organization for Women. NOW's Illinois chapter has endorsed Democratic Sen. Paul Simon. But NOW national president Molly Yard has called Simon's pre-1984 record on abortion "awful" and hinted strongly that the national organization will back his GOP opponent, Rep. Lynn Martin, in part because she is a woman. The local unit argues that Simon outscores Martin on a number of other women's issues, including Head Start, day care and infant health care.
  • Mexican Standoff

    A Harvard-educated economist, Carlos Salinas de Gortari was once dismissed as a bland technocrat. No more. Since becoming president of Mexico in late 1988, he has been full of surprises. He jailed the corrupt leader of the oil workers' union. He has relaxed restrictions against foreign investment, sold state companies and reduced inflation. His latest surprise-formally presented to President George Bush last week-is a proposed free-trade agreement between the United States and Mexico. ...
  • The Lost Picture Show

    As great paintings keep slipping from the grasp of museums into private collections, the Amon Carter Museum in Ft. Worth last week announced a stunning turnabout. From an unnamed source, the museum purchased Thomas Cole's "The Garden of Eden," a painting unseen in public since 1831 and never photographed until now. America's first great landscapist, Cole wanted to prove he was "no mere leaf painter" by depicting Eden as a distinctly New World glory. Drawing on Milton's poetic descriptions and on his own nature studies (the mountain in the background is Mount Chocorua in New Hampshire), he finished the picture just in time for the National Academy of Design's 1828 spring show. Shortly afterward, it sold for $400. Although the Amon Carter won't divulge the price, this example of what Cole called "a heavenly atmosphere in the pictures of the imagination" would bring millions on the open market. Let's hope we never find out exactly how much.
  • The Con Games People Play

    John Guare's Six Degrees of Separation begins with a scene of pure urban hysteria. Ouisa Kittredge (Stockard Channing) and her art-dealer husband, Flan (John Cunningham), flap about their ritzy New York apartment in a frenzy: they've discovered that they've been hoodwinked by a young black man, Paul (James McDaniel), who's passed himself off as the son of actor Sidney Poitier. Claiming to be short on cash while awaiting the return of his "father," Paul has talked himself into the hospitality of Flan and Ouisa, who later discover their guest copulating with a male hooker. Frazzled with fear and horror, the couple throw Paul out. It turns out that Paul has pulled a similar scam on other upscale New Yorkers. Events escalate into a surreal comedy that highlights the confusion between illusion and reality in the increasingly chaotic metropolis. ...
  • Upside Down From Down Under

    Circus Oz contains no animals ("Don't need 'cm"), no ring, no sawdust, no wizard even. But this combo of 21 muscular and multitalented Aussies puts plenty o' wizardry into its postmodern version of the big top. Oz specializes in death defying stunts done with disarming humor to the rhythm of rock and roll, played by the acrobats themselves. On their current U.S. tour, they blithely blast "girl scouts" from cannons and unfold entire musical skits on the ceiling. Says manager Susan Provan, "It's all done with magnets."
  • Mob Rule In Romania

    Bucharest was a battlefield once more. Police moved to disperse a small antigovernment rally in a downtown square last week, and protesters replied with stones, then fire. The government matched force with force. When protesters stormed Romania's lone television station thousands of club-wielding coal miners were brought in to quell the "fascist rebellion. " The miners beat anyone suspected of opposing the regime, punching a young man to the ground for having long hair and whipping a woman with chains after finding an antigovernment leaflet in her bag. ...
  • Interrogating The Prisoners

    Drug czar William Bennett has a new strategy in the war on drugs: systematically interrogate the captives. The Justice Department is preparing a major effort to build a comprehensive CIA-style database on the Colombian drug cartels by questioning hundreds, perhaps ultimately thousands, of drug dealers serving time in U.S. prisons. "We have a big human intelligence resource sitting in cages right here in the United States," says a senior administration official. "We don't even have to go hunt for them. " FBI and DEA field agents will thoroughly grill drug traffickers about their operations, with the possibility of earlier parole for those who cooperate with the program.
  • Inside The Invasion

    At 12:56 a.m. last Dec. 20, five minutes before U.S. forces' biggest battle since Vietnam, Lt. Col. Lynn Moore sat tensely in an OH-58 scout helicopter, circling the cloudy skies above El Renacer prison and eying his target through night-vision goggles. Moore's mission: to rescue the 64 prisoners inside, including two Americans. The jail bristled with guards, but the colonel had told his men they could take it without a single loss. For the past nine days, 80 paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division had been rehearsing the assault, sometimes right outside the prison walls. ...
  • Cloudy Future

    It's hard to keep Patrick Ewing earthbound. In "The Exorcist III: Legion," the "official" sequel to the head-spinning original, the basketball whiz has a silent cameo role as an oversize angel. The seven-foot Ewing appears in George C. Scott's dream about the afterlife. And if his acting career doesn't take off? Well, he still has his job as the demon center for the New York Knicks.
  • S&Ls: Blaming The Media

    Who's to blame for the savings and loan scandal? The owners and regulators of the industry have had their turn, in a new Hotline poll, the public faults both George Bush (by 59 percent) and Congress (64 percent). Now, inevitably, anger is building at the media for failing to sound clear warnings about the worst financial mess in the nation's history. That failure is "a scandal in itself," concludes Ellen Hume, executive director of Harvard's Shorenstein Barone Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy, and there should be "embarrassment and soul-searching at the highest levels of journalism." ...