Today's Story Line

Does power corrupt? There are no lack of examples currently in the news. From Peru to the Philippines, government leaders are facing allegations of illegal pocket lining. But at least in a working democracy, there are ways to expose it. In South Africa, the political integrity of the ruling party is being tested by an investigation into an alleged crooked arms deal (this page).

Penguins as climatic canaries?

If you're looking for evidence of global warming, then you may find it in today's piece on tuxedo-garbed waddlers frolicking on the beaches of Brazil (page 7).

David Clark Scott World editor


Campaign reruns: While watching the debate in the Israeli Knesset on Tuesday, reporter Ben Lynfield couldn't get a campaign ad out of his head. It was an ad that Prime Minister Ehud Barak had used to defeat Benjamin Netanyahu less than two years ago. "It was a catchy ad fashioned by American political consultants," recalls Ben. "It said that Netanyahu had reached a dead end in the peace process and the economy. He was stuck, stuck, stuck...." The political tables have now turned. "Barak is stuck, and Netanyahu's star is on the rise," he says.

Ramadan and Ronald: Saudi Arabian outlets of McDonald's, the world's biggest fast-food chain, will donate 26 cents from every meal bought during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan to Palestinian hospitals, the Al-Riyadh newspaper reported Tuesday.

The month of dawn-to-dusk fasting is a period of high food sales in the Middle East. After sunset, the fast is broken, and overnight feasts are common. But McDonald's, like other American fast-food restaurants in the Saudi kingdom, is currently suffering a sales slump following calls from leading Muslim clerics for a boycott of US products to protest Washington's support for Israel.

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