As the International Olympic Committee bribery scandal unfolds in Salt Lake City, Japan is awakening to reports of gifts given to win the right to host the 1998 Winter Games at Nagano. The bidding committee's accounting books were mysteriously burned. Quote of note: "We wanted the IOC members to have a correct understanding of Nagano's eagerness to host the Olympics." - a Nagano official.
The world now has a chance to put two former top Khmer Rouge leaders on trial, but Cambodia has been hesitating. Why? It wasn't aware of a global drive, after the massacres in Rwanda and Bosnia, to go after "crimes against humanity".
Wish them well: The Mexicans, after decades of watching their political candidates picked behind closed doors, may soon be experiencing presidential primaries.
It's part of a slow political evolution from Mexico's virtual one-party state.
While guns blaze in Kosovo, the Serbian leader's bigger worry may be in another corner of Yugoslavia: Montenegro, which shows signs of independence.
Europe, largely dependent on American military technology, is faltering in consolidating its defense companies.
- Clayton Jones World editor
REPORTERS ON THE JOB COINS OF THE WRONG REALM: When Monitor contributor Justin Brown visited Bar, Yugoslavia, to report today's story on Montenegro, he was looking forward to checking out the nightlife along the Adriatic coastline. But as it turned out, Bar is one of the most lifeless places he's seen in Yugoslavia. In fact, about the only people he ran into were four American maritime trainees, who had just landed. Justin was able to lend the sailors some of his regional expertise. The foursome had been trying to buy some goods with kunas, Croatia's currency, and they couldn't figure out why nobody would accept them. Justin explained some of the finer points of Balkan history - namely, that Croatia's war for independence earlier this decade pitted Croats against Serbs, who were backed by the Yugoslav National Army.
CULTURAL INSIGHTS (KILLING) FIELD STUDY: A small group of Cambodians in Phnom Penh are compiling evidence about Khmer Rouge atrocities at the internationally supported Documentation Center of Cambodia. Staff members sometimes come across evidence of torture or execution against their own families. When Monitor contributor Chris Seper asked the assistant director, Phat Kosal, if he had encountered his own relatives' names or photographs, he responded "not yet, but I hope I will." The staff maintains a sense of humor - the head of the office is referred to as "Brother No. 1," a reference to the name used by Pol Pot.
Let us hear from you.
Mail to: One Norway Street, Boston, MA 02115 via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org