Today's Story Line

Emerging democracies often face a tension between military and civilian political power.

Today, Peru offers a window on a struggle facing many of Latin America's democracies: making generals more accountable to civilian institutions, such as Congress (this page).

In Pakistan, Gen. Pervez Musharraf held the first of a series of elections supposed to "devolve" power back to local politicians. Is Pakistan Latin America's future? The military, dissatisfied with the "corrupt rule" of democratic leaders, has staged a series of coups (page 7).

David Clark Scott World editor


ANOTHER FORMER SPY: The Monitor's Scott Peterson was surprised by the level of security surrounding Russia's chief auditor, Sergei Stepashin (page 1). At the entrance to the Moscow building, there was an X-ray machine, checking of identification, and searching of bags. But upon reaching Mr. Stepashin's office, Scott had to walk through another X-ray machine and past another guard. "Why all the security," Scott asked. "Mr. Stepashin is very high on the Chechen rebels' hit list," an aide said. "He was Russia's intelligence chief during the first Chechen war."

POLITICS VS. YELLOW CARDS: The Monitor's Howard LaFranchi says his recent visit to Lima, Peru, came during a period of unabated political effervescence. But for many Limenos, the big topic was "a woman who had officiated a soccer match in the national tournament," Howard says. The young woman, a student named Riabel Trujillo, held her own on the macho soccer field despite a number of complaints from players unhappy with calls. When last month's 90-minute match was over, Ms. Trujillo was applauded - and she promised she'd be back for more.

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