Today's Story Line:
BOSTON — Above all else, his critics say, Slobodan Milosevic is a political survivor more than a Serb nationalist. He used Kosovo to rise to power in 1987. Now, he's retreating from it and calling the war a victory. He did the same in Slovenia, Croatia, and Bosnia as the old Yugoslavia broke up. But the price of his survival? More isolation and poverty for the Serbs.
Russia, despite its role in mediating a peace deal with Mr. Milosevic, sees only a NATO victory and another reminder of its weak global role. It still hasn't agreed on sending troops to Kosovo under loose NATO command. Regaining the goodwill of Moscow on security matters may take a long time.
American foreign aid is buying critical commercial time on Indonesian TV to remind voters in today's election that they can cast their ballots according to their own conscience. Decades under authoritarian rule made many Indonesians believe their votes didn't matter. Quote of note: "In the past the village was afraid of the village chief. Now the village chief is afraid of the village." - Matori Abdul Djalil, chairman of the National Awakening Party.
Royalty is designed to unite all its subjects. So when Britain's Prince Charles takes a strong stance against the government, does he risk eroding the appeal of the monarchy?
- Clayton Jones, World editor
REPORTERS ON THE JOB.. *NO NEED TO VENT NOW: During NATO airstrikes, Belgrade has been a pressure cooker for Western journalists, as Serbs have directed their anger at just about anything associated with the United States and Western Europe. But Balkans correspondent Justin Brown says that after Slobodan Milosevic capitulated last week, things loosened up. "People are nice to us again," says Justin, who notes that Serbs are friendlier to journalists in restaurants and are less shy about speaking English on the street.
PRESS CLIPPINGS.. *LEAVING SO SOON? The Times of London reports that that Marko Milosevic, the son of the Serbian leader, has transferred about $2.7 million to banks in South Africa in preparation for fleeing Serbia. The Milosevic family had also made inquiries about visas and vaccinations that might be needed to enter the country. The son, known for his bleached blond hair and penchant for loud rock music and fast cars, owns government-awarded concessions to import tobacco and alcohol. Nelson Mandela, the outgoing South African president, appeared to offer refuge to Milosevic last month when he said the Serb leader should not be banned from the country.
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