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Web-only Exclusives
November 30, 2000

From Our Correspondent: Hirohito and the War
A conversation with biographer Herbert Bix

From Our Correspondent: A Rough Road Ahead
Bad news for the Philippines - and some others

From Our Correspondent: Making Enemies
Indonesia needs friends. So why is it picking fights?

Asiaweek Time Asia Now Asiaweek story



BILLED AS THE "HISTORY all Hong Kong people should know," The Opium War was to set the record straight about Britain's mid-19th century assault on Chinese civilization. Director Xie Jin enjoyed Beijing's backing when shooting his two-and-a-half hour epic movie. But he has not met with popular support. In Hong Kong, the movie lasted about a week in first-run theaters, and was scaled back to smaller houses, mostly in outlying districts. Distributors swear slow ticket sales were the reason, not a lack of patriotism. In Beijing, despite low ticket prices, people stayed away, too. When an order went out to work units to organize attendance, sales dropped even more. The feeling seemed to be: if the government is going to give you a free ticket, why pay to see it?


A FEW DAYS AFTER acting Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim took his anti-corruption campaign to the East Malaysian state of Sabah, state minister Mahani Ahmad Raffae was moved to another portfolio. As well, deputy chief minister Ghapur Salleh and agriculture minister Amin Mulia have been mentioned in local press reports discussing certain timber deals over the past year. Current chief minister Yong Teck Lee, who will leave state government when his two-year stint ends in May, says he would prefer those under investigation to be identified, so that he and his colleagues can avoid being under suspicion.


IN SRI LANKA, PRESIDENT Chandrika Kumaratunga's People's Alliance government could be preparing for a snap poll as early as September. Kumaratunga reshuffled her cabinet last week. She needs a solid parliamentary majority to pass her constitutional reform package aimed at ending the civil war, but has only a one-seat edge. The detention of former minister Sirisena Cooray, a powerful opposition politician, on allegations that he is a threat to peace could be part of her plan. Cooray was a top aide to President Ranasinghe Premadasa, assassinated in 1993. Cooray, recently home from a year abroad, was trying to build up the opposition United National Party.


ACCORDING TO THE LIST of official candidates, Vietnam's top three leaders will not run for re-election for the National Assembly in voting to take place on July 20. Communist Party General Secretary Do Muoi, President Le Duc Anh and Prime Minister Vo Van Kiet were not among the 664 candidates officially listed.

This edition's table of contents | Asiaweek home



U.S. secretary of state says China should be 'tolerant'

Philippine government denies Estrada's claim to presidency

Faith, madness, magic mix at sacred Hindu festival

Land mine explosion kills 11 Sri Lankan soldiers

Japan claims StarLink found in U.S. corn sample

Thai party announces first coalition partner


COVER: President Joseph Estrada gives in to the chanting crowds on the streets of Manila and agrees to make room for his Vice President

THAILAND: Twin teenage warriors turn themselves in to Bangkok officials

CHINA: Despite official vilification, hip Chinese dig Lamaist culture

PHOTO ESSAY: Estrada Calls Snap Election

WEB-ONLY INTERVIEW: Jimmy Lai on feeling lucky -- and why he's committed to the island state


COVER: The DoCoMo generation - Japan's leading mobile phone company goes global

Bandwidth Boom: Racing to wire - how underseas cable systems may yet fall short

TAIWAN: Party intrigues add to Chen Shui-bian's woes

JAPAN: Japan's ruling party crushes a rebel at a cost

SINGAPORE: Singaporeans need to have more babies. But success breeds selfishness

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