Iran has gone to the dogs. It waived a religious objection to canines, bringing in drug-sniffers to stop the flow of opium across its borders. Its neighbor, Afghanistan had a record crop this year.
Poland is taking steps to stamp out another societal scourge: pornography. It is set to pass what could be the most stringent antiporn law in Europe.
The worst flooding in 50 years has hit Mozambique, a nation that has shown dramatic economic improvement in recent years.
Canadian farmers are crying "Uncle!" Their woes show the difficulty of competing in a "free trade" market with heavily subsidized US and European farmers.
Give us peace, already. A Belfast poll shows that 75 percent of those in Northern Ireland say prospects for peace are better now than at any time in five years.
David Clark Scott World editor
REPORTERS ON THE JOB
* THE REAL THING: Stories about poor conditions in China's orphanages were so prevalent in 1997 that the Monitor's Kevin Platt wondered whether the Lijiang orphanage would be "sanitized" for his visit. He didn't tell officials exactly when he'd be there. Upon arrival, everyone he spoke with was very relaxed and allowed him to speak with the children and teachers, an unusual experience when reporting in China. He spent three hours with the the children, who seemed happy and healthy. Later, he asked Anne Thurston, who has visited many orphanages, if he'd been snowed. "No. When you go to a poorly run home, you can tell in the first few minutes. The kids are malnourished and withdrawn."
* MOZAMBIQUE RELIEF GROUPS: Many major aid organizations, including the following, are accepting donations to help African flood victims:
Save The Children
Mozambique Flood Relief
PO Box 940, 54 Wilton Road
Westport, CT 06880
American Red Cross
International Response Fund
PO Box 37243
Washington, DC 20013
151 Ellis Street NE
Atlanta, GA 30303-2426
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