• More Than Women's Work: Reporter Ben Lynfield says that the Machsom Watch group credits their ability to monitor Israeli troops (this page) to the fact that they are women and are perceived as less of a threat by the mostly male troops. But Ben noticed some other characteristics that may contribute to their success. "Many are in their 50s and 60s, and many have children or grandchildren in the Israeli army. To have three or four gray-haired women with clipboards standing near a checkpoint is a soft, unthreatening picture. I wouldn't even describe them as activists; they're more mainstream than most activists here," he says.
• Taste of India: Reporter Dan Morrison has witnessed the decline of the tea-drinker and the rise of the coffee-drinker in India (this page). While there are no Starbucks outlets, "any city of any size will have a coffee shop - or 10 - filled with students and young adults who work in the hotels or call centers, making more money than their parents do," says Dan. Barista and Cafe Coffee Bay are the big chains. The newest competitor is Java Green. "It's a telecommunications conglomerate that has shops where you pay for your cellphone card, surf the Net, drink coffee."
Dan freely admits his own quaffing bias. "I've drunk tea for 15 years," he says. His brand: "Taj Mahal," a fairly common blend of Assam and Nilgiri teas.
- David Clark Scott