Newswire

Newswire

  • Every Parent's Nightmare

    Trend spotters, take note. There's a new motif in villainy rumbling through the collective unconscious of Hollywood. The New Ogre, a clever devil, sets out to destroy its enemy by homing in on its enemy's children. This ogre doesn't harm kids; it seduces them into preferring the villain to their own parents. This was Captain Hook's tactic with Peter Pan's kids in "Hook." It was an aspect of Robert De Niro's revenge in "Cape Fear." And it is a primal ploy in the evil scheme of the wicked nanny in The Hand That Rocks the Cradle, a thriller that cannily toys with the fears and guilts of baby-boomer moms. ...
  • Altared States

    Life without Jack Nicholson is shaping up just fine for Anjelica Huston, 40. She's engaged to sculptor Robert Graham, 52. The two were in Manhattan last week for a show of his work. The wedding date is vague"sometime in the spring," he says-but Huston wants kids. "The Graham Family"? Kooky, maybe, but definitely angelic.
  • 'Back From The Living Dead'

    Saddam Hussein swaggered down the line of Iraqi Army officers late last December, pinning newly minted "Mother of All Battles" medals to their chests and showering them with gifts of land and autos. As the Iraqi dictator embraced them in a bear hug, the soldiers stared ahead with the fixed intensity of targets caught in a rifle's cross hairs. Then Saddam rewrote history in front of a national television audience by insisting Iraq's rout in the gulf war had been a heroic victory after all. And he indulged in the sport he likes best-baiting the Americans. The Bush administration talked of an impending coup, but it was wishful thinking. The only way a rebellion could succeed would be if he led it himself. ...
  • Tricky Pick?

    Is Richard Nixon displaying sage political punditry or is he up to his tricky old ways.? On "Nightline" last week, the former president predicted that Patrick Buchanan would win a stunning 40 percent of the vote in the New Hampshire primary. The prediction infuriated Buchanan, who felt his former boss was intentionally setting the bar that high so that anything less would be seen as a loss. Nixon strongly disagrees with Buchanan on foreign policy, and he believes a sitting president should be challenged for the nomination. GOP insiders confirm that the ex-president was intentionally playing the "expectations game" at Buchanan's expense. His real prediction for Buchanan's vote total is far lower, they say.
  • What The Soviet Military Knew

    What was Moscow's view of Norman Schwarzkopf's "Hail Mary" flanking maneuver that encircled the Iraqi Army.? "The plan was not highly original," the Soviet military thought. What about all that high-tech American weaponry that worked flawlessly? "To be objective [it was used under] ideal conditions in the absence of any serious return fire and electronic countermeasures." ...
  • The Fight For Red October

    When the Soviet Union collapsed, the most pressing issue for foreigners was who would control the world's largest military machine. The creation of a new Commonwealth of Independent States only papered over the problem. Last week Russia and Ukraine, the two most important members, were locked in a bitter tug of war over key components of the former Soviet armed forces. The immediate prize, the Navy's Black Sea fleet, inspired angry volleys of rhetoric:"Ukraine is a maritime power," claimed Col. Gen. Konstantin Morozov, the republic's defense minister, "and since we have to guard our borders and our coast, we regard the Black Sea fleet as part of our armed forces.""Excuse me," retorted Russia's Adm. Vladimir Chernavin, commander of the former Soviet Navy, "but when has Ukraine been a great maritime power without ever having its own fleet?"Ukrainian President Leonid Kravchuk demanded that all 1.3 million Soviet military personnel stationed on his territory pledge allegiance to the...
  • Let The Campaign-Ad Games Begin

    Ready, aim, roll the video: the campaign ads are back. Herewith, the first of NEWSWEEK'S semiregular critiques of the current TV offerings for Campaign '92: ...
  • More Inspection For Mr. Beef

    Bill Clinton knows how hard it is to make Americans sacrifice. He briefly lost the governorship of Arkansas in 1980 after imposing a tax increase on auto licenses. And last year he watched fellow governors Ray Mabus of Mississippi and Buddy Roemer of Louisiana lose their jobs when they tried to spread the pain. So Clinton has learned that lesson. But has he learned it too well? As his campaign soars, his fresh ideas for "reinventing government" will soon come into conflict with his innate caution about offending people. His message is to challenge; his nature and experience tell him to please. Trying to bridge the two might resurrect his old nickname, "Slick Willy," and make him seem more facile than he really is. ...
  • 'The Hottest Button You Can Push'

    Amanda Silver looks too wholesome to have written as twisted a tale as "The Hand That Rocks the Cradle," but, says the 28-year-old first-time screenwriter, it was easy. "Once I got those two women in the same house together fighting over that family, the script wrote itself. Sometimes I couldn't wait to get to my computer to see what would happen next." ...
  • Dark Doings In A Georgia County

    For most of the last 40 years, nothing was what it seemed in McIntosh County, Ga. The pecan stands and truck stops that lined U.S. 17 housed gambling dens and whorehouses. The local law was crooked. And the county's blacks, while they had one of the highest percentages of voter registration in the country, were totally powerless. Even when the corruption stopped, things did not get much better. The black county commissioner whose election in 1978 seemed to symbolize a new era wound up in jail on a drug conviction a decade later, disgraced and discredited. In this luridly entertaining nonfiction debut, Melissa Fay Gilbert shows how the people most often snookered in this shell game were the locals themselves. If they expected too little of the corrupt sheriff who used their county as his personal kingdom, they clearly expected too much of the young black commissioner whose rise paralleled the sheriff 's fall. As one white observer put it, "We idealized the black civil rights people....
  • Citizen Flipper

    Finally! Malibu, the bastion of sun-deck liberalism, has granted citizenship to...cetaceans--otherwise known as whales, dolphins and porpoises. From now on, it seems, these seagoing mammals have rights. The city council hopes to stop the "abusive exploitation of dolphins and whales for research and military purposes"--or did they mean porpoises? The result will likely be a much needed marine mammal sanctuary along the coastline. The city has already declared itself a "Human-Dolphin Shared Environment" designed to "improve the relationship between humans and cetaceans."
  • Scowcroft: 'I Think They Got The Message'

    After trade talks in Japan, some business leaders traveling with President Bush called the trip a failure. But in an interview with NEWSWEEK'S Ann McDaniel, national-security adviser Brent Scowcroft was upbeat. Excerpts: ...
  • Turning Ice Into Gold

    The U.S. Figure Skating Championships have more often resembled a coronation than a true competition. The judges simply penciled in the previous year's winners. In an Olympic year like this, that made it easy for American fans-who tend to pay close attention to figure skating only every four years-to recognize and embrace their skating kings and queens. ...
  • Take The Money And Shut Up!

    Karen Finley isn't exactly an ideal First Amendment poster child. The theme of her performance art is the subjugation of women. To illustrate it, she sometimes strips down to her waist, smears her breasts with chocolate (intended to suggest cow dung) and slaps on some alfalfa sprouts (sperm). Her show is a raging diatribe on rape, alcoholism and suicide. Critics rave, but not so the federal government. Under pressure from Congress, the National Endowment for the Arts in 1990 abruptly withdrew its $8,000 grant to Finley. Joined by three other artists, she sued, claiming that the government unconstitutionally discriminated against her political views. ...
  • Talking Digital

    Last week's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas was a less than spectacular success. Instead of new blockbuster items manufacturers mostly offered incrementally improved versions of such gizmos as digital music equipment. One sleeper item may be the Tropez 900DX digital cordless phone, made by VTech Communications in Beaverton, Ore. It has a range up to 10 times farther than a standard cordless, so you can take it all the way to the corner store. It also has a scrambler that keeps neighbors from listening in on you.
  • Bowled Over

    This year, Russians will be able to see the Super Bowl for the first time, and in typical Soviet style: late. Chicago's T.L.I. Corp. will broadcast the game to a potential audience of 180 million people. But it won't air until March because it takes time to edit a game for people unfamiliar with terms like "safety blitz." The broadcast will have regular commercial breaks, but ads won't cost nearly as much as they do here: $10,000 for a 30-second spot--an enticing deal for American companies eager to tap into the Russian market. Illustration (CHIP WASS)
  • Fifteen Cease-Fires...And Counting

    After 14 abortive cease-fires in six months of civil war, Yugoslavia finally seemed to have found a formula for at least temporary peace. Warring factions signed a United Nations-brokered cease-fire--which, if successful, would be followed by the creation of a 10,000-person peacekeeping force in war-ravaged Croatia. But the bubble of optimism burst violently last week when a Yugoslav Air Force missile blew apart an unarmed European Community helicopter, killing five peace monitors--four Italians and one Frenchman. The incident also dealt a damaging blow to the peace process, painstakingly negotiated by U.N. special envoy Cyrus Vance. "Whoever ordered the helicopter shot down was aiming to sabotage the cease-fire," says one diplomat. ...
  • She's Such A Thriller

    Could Michael Jackson be singing a new tune? He usually spends most of his time with children and animals, but over the Christmas holidays he was spotted in Las Vegas hand in glove with showgirl Shoshana Hawley. When not taking in the Excalibur Hotel's King Arthur's Tournament Pageant (they saw it four times and cuddled throughout), the couple was said to be happily ensconced in Michael's bungalow. What we don't know is whether Bubbles the Chimp was with them.