Terror In The Tokyo Skies

Passengers aboard All Nippon Airways Flight 61 immediately noticed something strange about 28-year-old Yuji Nishizawa: his body was twitching and he wore a pair of dirty cotton gloves. Still, none of the 503 travelers bound from Tokyo to Sapporo imagined what would happen next. Nishizawa pulled out a 20-cm kitchen knife, muscled his way into the cockpit and ordered the pilot, 51-year-old Naoyuki Nagashima, to turn the plane around. "I wanted to soar through the air," Nishizawa reportedly told police. As Flight 61 approached its destination, Nagashima, helped by passengers and crew, wrestled the hijacker to the ground. But in the melee, the veteran pilot was slashed across the throat and shoulder and bled to death. Though another ANA pilot landed the plane safely at Tokyo's Haneda Airport, Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi wasn't smiling. Angered by the murder--the first such death in Japanese history--he demanded to know how the hijacker got a weapon onto the plane. Whatever the answer, it won't be much comfort for Nagashima's family.

SOUTH KOREAGoing for Broke

It took drew group chairman Kim Woo Chewing three decades to transform a small trading house into Korea's second-largest conglomerate. His creditors are giving him far less time to dismantle it. At least $50 billion in debt, the company announced a massive restructuring program last week. But its prospects for recovery still seem slim. And its financial woes are becoming South Korea's. The Seoul stock market plunged a record 7.3 percent last Friday, the won fell and interest rates surged.

TELEVISIONClash of Titans?

Put News Corp. chairman Rupert Murdoch and Canal Plus CEO Pierre Lescure too close together and you might suck the air out of a room. French utilities firm Vivendi must have oxygen masks; last week it upped its stake in Canal Plus and Murdoch's BSkyB. The two deals cost $2.6 billion. Vivendi now owns 24.5 percent of BSkyB and 49 percent of Canal Plus (it'll sell 9 percent to an undisclosed media company). Rumor is, it hopes to merge the pay-TV giants. A spokesperson wouldn't rule it out, but said the immediate concern is bolstering ties with Murdoch. Good luck. Vivendi CEO Jean-Marie Messier is known as a man who "likes control."

EUROPEBurst Bubbles

Coca-Cola is still fizzling out in Europe. Last week EC inspectors raided company offices in Britain, Germany, Austria and Denmark as part of an investigation into whether the soft-drink giant was unlawfully coercing retailers into stocking its products over those of lesser known rivals. The raids are the latest in a series of probes by the European Commission into suspected violations of competition laws. This month British Airways was fined £4.4 million for operating illegal loyalty schemes. If found guilty, Coca-Cola could face a fine of up to 10 percent of its European turnover. Said a London spokesperson: "We are cooperating fully... but we maintain that we are in full compliance with the law."

THE BUZZIf He Can Make It There ...

When Rudy Giuliani starts his Senate run in earnest, we're sure to hear much crowing over his Manhattan miracle. Has the mayor earned the right to boast? The buzz on the Big Apple, from Brooklyn to the Bronx:

Dubuque on the Hudson... Rudy's nixed drugs in clubs and dancing (!) in bars. Result: Scenesters say the night life's way tamer, lamer.

Singapore on the Hudson New Yorkers fear the NYPD's wrath. Must cracking down on crime mean innocent folk get harassed, bullied ... and shot?

...But Yup, Crime's Down Those very same New Yorkers love the safe streets. Maybe martial law's a fair trade-off for security.

Can't Pay for Prep School? Oops. While Rudy's busy busting turnstile hoppers, the public schools stay overcrowded and in dire shape. Priorities?

He's Got Your Back During a recent heat wave, 200,000 lost electricity. Rudy sued Con Ed. Next heat wave: No outages.

Mo' Money Current cost of living: Entirely insane. Just when rents seemed surreally high, they got higher. And oh, those Realtors' fees!


A rare Japanese toy robot trounced the world's most expensive Barbie doll last week at a Christie's auction in London. Diamond Barbie, with 160 diamonds in her gown, failed to fetch the expected £20,000-£40,000. The 1958 Masudaya Machine Man, however, sold for more money than any other robot at auction: £29,900.


David Ogilvy loved what he sold, and sold only what he loved. "At 60 miles an hour the loudest noise in this new Rolls-Royce comes from the electric clock," he wrote for a favorite client in 1959. Years later, deciding the quality of the famous car was no longer up to snuff, he dropped the account. Dead at 88, the British-born founder of the Ogilvy & Mather agency was the driving force in a creative revolution that swept the industry in the '60s. Among his iconic campaigns: The Man in the Hathaway Shirt and Schweppervescence. "The consumer is not a moron," he often said. "She is your wife. Try not to insult her intelligence."

HERALDRYA Coat (of Arms) of Many Colors

As George W. Bush and Al Gore joust for the American presidency, Burke's Peerage, the British blueblood bible, has designed coats-of-arms for each candidate. The emblems "adhere to the ancient science and art of heraldry," but not without a dose of 20th-century humor. Bush's (below) shows a burning bush and an oil rig. Gore's includes a Latin scroll that reads, "The second shall be first." Not if Bush can help it.

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