• First Aid For Kids' Fears About War

    One girl refused to board her school bus because she was afraid of terrorists. Another child worried that his parents had been sent to the gulf when they were late getting home from work. They are just two of thousands of American children who have suffered severe anxiety since the start of the war, says Denise McNaught of the National Childhood Grief Institute in Minneapolis. ...
  • Scoring A 'Moron-Athon'

    The biggest winner of the 1991 Grammy Awards was Sinead O'Connor, who didn't attend. She probably had a better time than we did. And why was Richard Gere there? And why did he feel it necessary to say hi to his girlfriend? A look at other attendees: Memo to Grammy producers: What, were Arsenio and Billy busy? This lounge lizard couldn't get a laugh at a bowling banquet.True, sometimes she's way too sincere. But at a gaudy moron-athon like this - are you listening, Cyndi Lauper? - it's welcome. Nice Lennon tribute.So crude and indecipherable he made Jack Nicholson seem like Gilligan. But, hey, at least the guy has a sense of humor.Whoa, velvet-lungs, that toupee seemed all over the place. But a nation mourned when you lost to Harry Connick Jr.'s big ears.
  • 'I Don't Want Any Tears'

    With the ground war approaching, American troops delivered what they believed might be their final messages home. Some sent letters or tape recordings. Others stood in line at pay phones for hours, waiting for a line to the United States. Their contacts with home were marked by words of courage, hope, fear and, above all, love. ...
  • Going Bonkers In Yonkers

    In Lost in Yonkers Neil Simon has found himself. For all their popularity, his recent "autobiographical" trilogy - "Brighton Beach Memoirs," "Biloxi Blues," "Broadway Bound" - didn't succeed in stitching Simon the Funny and Simon the Serious into a new creature, Simon the Pure. Too often he was dishing out one from column A and one from column B: have a laugh, have a tear. In his 27th play laughter and tears have come together in a new emotional truth. There are moments in this play when you experience a new kind of laughter for Simon, a silent laughter that doesn't explode into a yuk but implodes straight into your heart. ...
  • His 'Kampf'

    If you dismissed George Bush's comparisons between Saddam Hussein and Adolf Hitler, consider this. Saddam, like Hitler, outlined his vision of the world - and his place in history - in a book whose title in German is "Unser Kampf," or "Our Struggle." (Hitler did the same in "Mein Kampf," or "My Struggle.") Published in Switzerland and Iraq in 1977, Saddam's book was excerpted last week in the German magazine Hamburger Rundschau. His view: there must be a Mideast war to expel the Jews from Israel while dividing the United States, Europe and Japan over oil.
  • Chipping Away At Saddam

    Does Saddam Hussein tee you off? Now you can do the same to him. Thanks to the capitalist spirit that made this country great, the Bully of Baghdad's face has been imprinted on golf balls - and entrepreneur Mike O'Shea of Plymouth, Mich., has sold 8,200 dozen in the first month. O'Shea thinks people like them because "there's no real violent connotations there." It depends on the strength of your drive, but there's no better way to say, "In your face."
  • Why Diplomacy Failed

    Last Saturday, Iraqi Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz stood before reporters in Moscow and announced: "Iraq agrees to comply with Resolution 660 and therefore will withdraw immediately and unconditionally all its forces in Kuwait." It was the first time an Iraqi official had said such a thing, publicly and authoritatively. Only a few days before, Aziz's concession might have been enough to end the gulf war, or at least to head off the allied ground offensive. Now it was just window dressing: too little and too late to stop the slaughter in the desert. ...
  • Taking The Town Private

    How low has the Massachusetts miracle sunk? Soon the state may not be able to freeze ice in the winter. ...
  • Hi, Neighbor!

    This brings new meaning to the term home video. The latest trend, which probably won't get a Sunday-night time slot, is selling do-it-yourself pornography. Producers will pay up to $30 for each minute of naughty-naughty films made in the privacy of your own home. The quality usually stinks but rentals are heavy at porn stores across the nation. Store operators say many customers prefer to see real action among people who don't always look like Harry Reems and Marilyn Chambers. The business has grown so big that some porn companies send camera crews to people's homes to shoot simulated home videos on location. Some current titles: "Amateur Hour" and "Open Window."
  • Target: Total Victory

    I ask only that all of you stop and say a prayer for all the coalition forces. who this very moment are risking their lives for their country and for all of us. President George Bush, Feb. 23
  • Risking 'Friendly Fire'

    Lt. Col. Ralph Hayles of the U.S. Army believed in the virtues of high-tech warfare. "We have a big license to go out there and maximize our technological advantages to minimize casualties," the Apache helicopter battalion commander told an interviewer in January. But during a skirmish with Iraqi forces near the Kuwaiti border last week, Hayles mistakenly fired a laser-guided Hellfire missile into a U.S. armored troop carrier and a light armored tank. Two soldiers died and six were wounded. Days later, military officials relieved Hayles of his command. ...
  • Let's Play Gulf!

    Now people are actually having 'fun' watching war. John Berryhill, a student at the University of Delaware, has come up with the Persian Gulf Party Game, the rules for which have been spread through the Internet computer network. Some rules available in next month's Harper's: after each commercial, rotate between networks. When someone says "Scud," swig some beer and change the channel; if someone says "Patriot," everyone salutes. The last to salute drinks. When Wolf Blitzer appears, everyone must shout "woof, woof." And whenever Dan Rather says something insipid, the last person to shout "Change the channel!" must drink.
  • The Many Faces Of Gorbachev

    He's not Thomas Jefferson - or Saddam Hussein. But we still try to reduce his story to a simple movie plot. ...
  • A Press-Bashing Hero

    Polls show that most Americans don't like the way the media is covering the Persian Gulf War, a fact the Republican National Committee is attempting to exploit. Identical letters to the editor have recently appeared in dozens of newspapers around the country. The letters urge support for the troops in the gulf and denounce the media for giving "so much attention to the small number of anti-war protestors." The campaign was orchestrated by the RNC, which sent out 500,000 appeals asking recipients to sign the preprinted letters and mail them in accompanying preaddressed envelopes to their local papers. "It's not press-bashing," said an RNC spokesman. But the appeal was signed by none other than Wyoming Sen. Alan Simpson, whose recent claim that CNN Baghdad correspondent Peter Arnett was an Iraqi "sympathizer" made Simpson a hero among press-bashers.
  • Going Into Battle With The Tiger Brigade

    The official announcement of a ground war was a day away, but the Marines were already hard at it. Backed by cavalry artillery, they engaged the enemy in a fierce armor and artillery duel. The battle began near noon on Thursday when three companies of Marines - about 500 men - in Light Armored Vehicles began a reconnaissance in force over the Kuwait border. The Iraqis attacked with mortars, artillery and machine-gun fire, then with T-55 tanks. But the Marines' land-launched TOW missiles took out four Iraqi tanks, seven trucks and a BMP armored personnel carrier. The Americans captured 73 prisoners during the first night of the battle; an additional 23 surrendered under fire early the following day. "It's been a pretty brisk fight," said Col. John Sylvester, commander of the Tiger Brigade. "But they have been coming out waving white flags, and one of them said, 'We're happy to give up, but we had to make a token fight first'." ...
  • Buzzwords

    The flag-making industry has gotten a lot of attention lately. Much of the vocabulary inside the industry is derived from the Latin "vexillum," which was the name of a square flag carried by the Roman cavalry: Flag worship.Study of flag history.Flag hobbyist (in Great Britain, Flagwallah).Flag fact; or vexibyte, if the information is computerized at the flag factory.A couple of other words not related to vexillum:A flag maker or designer (derived from Betsy Ross). A member of the flag industry who is unemployed.
  • Sleeping Beauty

    The year was 1934 and 15-year-old Margaret Hookham of London was making her debut with the company that would become Britain's Royal Ballet. She was a snowflake in "The Nutcracker." Two years later she had become the company's reigning ballerina, and her name, too, had metamorphosed: she was Margot Fonteyn. For millions of people around the world, her name came to symbolize classical ballet as we most often imagine it - though not the way we very often see it. Last week Fonteyn died of cancer in Panama, where she had lived on a cattle ranch with her late husband, Roberto Arias. She insisted on keeping her illness, that sign of mortal imperfection, a secret from the public. ...
  • Solid Grammy For Gold

    Julie Gold wrote "From a Distance" five years ago - which makes it almost a golden oldie in the fast-moving music world. But this was the year Bette Midler brought it to popular attention - and since the Grammys are about popular attention, Gold now has a Grammy. She also has the hearts and minds of war-anxious Americans. For them, the ballad about how we tend to lose perspective on the truth has become an anthem. Gold understands the song's resonance today, but says, "Sadly, it's applicable every day."
  • Who Supplied Saddam?

    The White House may soon, possibly as early as this week, agree to release a "sanitized" list of items approved by the Commerce Department for export to Iraq during the six years before the invasion of Kuwait. The list would not name the companies that sold the equipment. Despite pressure from a House government operations subcommittee, the export list - said to include such potentially sensitive material as computer parts, lasers, aircraft supplies, chemicals and emulsion explosives - has been kept secret for months by the Bush administration. Although all the sales were legal, many of the U.S. firms that did business with Iraq during the 1980s are squirming. "If that list gets out, a lot of public-relations guys are going to get rich," says a Hill staffer.