ALEN MUHIC'S BIRTHMOTHER wishes she could forget Feb. 20, 1993, the day he was born. ""When I heard him cry, I asked the doctor to bring him to me,'' the 33-year-old woman recalls. ""I wanted to strangle him.'' Instead she abandoned him in the besieged Bosnian town of Gorazde, at the hospital where the delivery took place.
IT'S JUST THE KIND OF RECONSTRUCTION project that can ensnarl a Third World government. The narrow-gauge railroad that snakes from the Red Sea port of Massawa up a dramatic escarpment to the Eritrean capital, Asmara, was an engineering marvel when the Italians completed it -- in the 1920s.
He is a beloved figure in the southern French village of Bourg-St-Andeol. Several times a week, as morning sunlight filters through the yellow stained-glass windows of a 12th-century church, Father Wenceslas Munyeshyaka, 37, leads his worshipers through the masses that have regulated the rhythms of life here for centuries.
Kebede Admase, 73, is a living testament to the anguish of Ethiopia. In December 1977, at the height of a brutal crackdown on alleged enemies of the Marxist dictatorship then in power, Kebede's teenage son and daughter were arrested, denounced and thrown into prison in the capital, Addis Ababa.
AT A CHECKPOINT ACROSS A BRIDGE near Kigali, black-bereted soldiers from Rwanda's Presidential Guard swigged bottles of beer and poked their M-16 rifles into a Red Cross truck carrying medicine into the besieged capital. "Any Belgians here?" asked one half-drunk private, glaring at three terrified foreigners inside. "We're going to kill all the Belgians." There was a burst of machine-gun fire nearby, followed by the distant crash of heavy artillery.
"DON'T BE AFRAID," NELSON MANDELA told a campaign rally near Durban last week. The threat of violence shouldn't keep anyone in Natal province from voting next month, the ANC leader said, because "there is sufficient protection for all of you." But the front runner in South Africa's first democratic elections evidently had second thoughts about his own safety in the region.
IT WAS THE FIRST HOPEFUL image out of Mogadishu after months of escalating violence: U.S. Army pilot Michael Durant, held hostage for 11 days by Mohammed Farah Aidid's militiamen, whisked onto an American helicopter to begin his journey to a military hospital in Germany.
On Sunday, Jan. 10, the phone rang at Jay Leno's home in Beverly Hills. On the line was Robert Wright, president of NBC, calling to discuss the network's agonizing, monthlong debate over whether to replace Leno with David Letterman as host of "The Tonight Show." "Jay," said Wright, "this is going to be the toughest decision we've ever had to make.""I'm not going to ask who you're picking," Leno responded. "All I want to do is tell you my case." Then Leno launched into a sales pitch, stressing...
Thus far, President Bush has rejected the invitation, explaining, "I'm not going to be a teeny-bopper at 68." Ross Perot is flirting with the notion, although he has some reservations. "I'm not going to have people 'jiving' behind me when I answer questions, am I?" he asked.
With the publication of "Sex," Time Warner was again caught up in controversy. The Wall Street Journal attacked the company as "our era's undisputed schlockmeister," and Madonna, the faux dominatrix, as "a schlockmistress." But will the pop diva's Mylar-bagged fantasy become another "Cop Killer"?
Nearly two decades ago, in a TV era replete with ethnic stereotypes, a teenager named J.J. strutted through the ABC series "Good Times," flashing a flubber-lipped grin and punctuating the air with his catch phrase, "Dy-no-MITE!" But if anyone thought such caricatures of African-American life had gone the way of Fred Sanford's junkyard truck, they haven't taken a look at prime time this year.
Five years in the making, "The Pacific Century," a 10-part documentary premiering this week on PBS, is a history lesson that goes down easy. Produced by Alex Gibney, a filmmaker whose critically acclaimed "Battle for Eastern Airlines" on PBS chronicled the rancorous 1989 machinists' strike, this series covers a vastly larger chunk of time.
Joe Roth heard all the rumors. They began circulating days after the dreadful opening of Fox's " For the Boys," scorned by Daily Variety as "the [Christmas] holiday's only turkey." Those rumors gained momentum after "Shining Through," another lavish World War II film that sank faster than a U-boat in the Battle of the Atlantic.