Reporters on the Job

FRESH REVELATIONS: Reporter Nicholas Blanford was surprised by the forthrightness of the rogue Palestinian militant commander he interviewed for today's story. "Mounir Moqdah is often interviewed by foreign journalists. But he doesn't admit much. This time was different," says Nick. "I've known him for several years and went to ask him about the cease-fire agreement. Until now, he's never publicly discussed his involvement in Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade or an assassination attempt on Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. When I told him he'd never told me this before, he replied that he'd never told anyone these things before."

Mr. Moqdah told Nick he'd seen him on Hizbullah TV (Nick participated in a panel discussion during the Iraq war). That appearance apparently helped cement Moqdah's confidence in Nick.

WATCHING BIG BROTHER: Reporter Nicole Itano recently got a taste of the mania surrounding the 24-hour-a-day reality TV show in South Africa. At home, a friend visiting from Angola sat glued to the Nicole's TV for 10 hours a day. To write this story, Nicole went to the studio to see one of the "eviction parties." She sat in the audience during the live show as a cast member was kicked out of the house. "The studio was quite high-tech but small - only about 100 people. They held up cue cards for us to cheer or shout 'Big Brother Africa.' " Two rows were reserved for journalists. The local papers are obsessed by it, she says. "They have correspondents watching the program all day and writing about it." And Nicole? "I stopped after I wrote the story."

David Clark Scott
World editor

CORRECTION

ANOTHER NAME FOR JUSTICE: In the June 24 article, "Belgium makes justice less global" (page 6), the court set up in The Hague to try the worst human rights abuses, was misnamed. It is the International Criminal Court.

Cultural snapshot

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