Today's Story Line

High seas, low oversight? Two novel attempts to evade laws on land - a Dutch abortion ship and an Internet privacy isle near Britain - are testing the limits of authority .

In Lebanon, UN peacekeepers are verifying the borderline between Israel and Lebanon - and discovering the power and pitfalls of Mideast cartography .

You won't see volunteers getting out the vote in Japan on Sunday. The campaigners are paid "lady birds" .

David Clark Scott World editor

RepoRters on the job..

*EXIT, STAGE NORTH: Reporters are always talking to friends and neighbors with an ear cocked for story ideas. And sometimes it pays off. Correspondent Howard LaFranchi says he was not surprised during a trip to the US-Mexico border to hear that Mexican migration is up. He had anecdotal evidence back home in Mexico City. "We know of three people who either left recently or are planning soon to cross the northern border. One friend's brother-in-law says he'll cross into the Arizona desert to get to a construction job in L.A. People talk about not being able to feed their families, but this guy is doing OK as a locksmith here," Howard says. "He's just convinced he can do better in L.A."

*SHOOTER OUT OF SIGHT: For Lebanese Hizbullah guerrillas long used to secret operations, old habits die hard. When the Monitor's Scott Peterson visited one border site in Lebanon he expected to take photos of the proud Hizbullah, in possession of territory vacated by Israel, after 22 years of occupation. "There was nothing remotely strategic nearby, unless a pile of concrete rubble is considered strategic," says Scott. Still, the order rang out from a Hizbullah operative: "No photos!" "Tsk, tsk," Scott's Lebanese interpreter muttered, under his breath. "They are all the same, just like the Syrians and Israelis, when they have a taste of power." Today's photos were taken at another border point, with no guerrillas nearby.

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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