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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

OCTOBER 15, 1999 VOL. 25 NO. 41

The Art of Raising Hard Cash

Prince Jefri's distress sale of the century
Kit Chan Kit-yee's bad press in Taipei
Sexy in a Wholesome Kind of Way

Munshi Ahmed For Asiaweek
Theater: Speaking in Tongues
Why a Thai version of a Japanese play is a hit - in Tokyo

People: Sale of the Century
Prince Jefri's grand auction

Books: About Face
The tough-to-handle U.S.-China relationship

Public accusations are soiling Seoul's press

Dealing with libel on the uncensored Internet

People: Singlished Out
A Singapore sitcom star may have to clean up his act (10/08/99)

People: Jet Kicks the Single Life
A Quiet(ish) wedding for kickmaster Jet Li (10/01/99)

People: Seoul Sisters
It's tough to cross a golf green these days without running into another South Korean sensation (09/17/99)

The word in London is that Prince Jefri Bolkiah, the playboy brother of the Sultan of Brunei, is being forced to sell off a large chunk of his fabulous art collection. His aim, say newspapers, is to raise up to about $700 million to help pay off his debts. Jefri's ill-fated and now-defunct construction and investment company, Amedeo (named, incidentally, after his favorite painter, Amedeo Modigliani) was wound up in July, leaving liabilities of $3.6 billion. Just how many paintings the pinched potentate has is not known, but reports suggest he is offloading enough Impressionist and modern works to make it the biggest-ever single-owner sale of art. Among the pieces will be a portrait by Picasso of his mistress (Picasso's, not Jefri's), Dora Maar. The painting is expected to go for about $53 million - which would be the highest price ever paid for a work by the artist. Jefri, 45, was quite a spender in his heyday. In addition to picking up houses and hotels in London, Paris and Beverly Hills, he famously acquired a luxury yacht, Tits, complete with tenders Nipple I and Nipple II, plus a fleet of flashy cars. He hasn't been seen in Brunei for some time and is thought to be living in London or Paris.  

Press Kit
Last year, Singapore pop star Kit Chan Kit-yee was the darling of the Taipei press. Her stage portrayal of the late Taiwanese singing sensation Teresa Teng Li-jun in the musical Legend was hailed as hauntingly beautiful - almost as good as the real thing. What a difference an earthquake can make. Now the Taipei papers are calling Chan, 26, nothing more than a "fair-weather friend." The reason? She hot-footed it out of Taiwan as soon as she could in the wake of the temblor that hit the island Sept. 21. Chan, who had been in Taiwan to promote her new album, "Dazzling," was back in Singapore as fast as you can say Richter Scale. Frightened? You bet. She says: "After the earthquake, I felt like I had escaped a calamity. My first instinct was to rush home." The singer later returned to Taipei to help with fundraising for victims of the quake. And, no, it wasn't just to repair relations with the media. "I wanted to help because the Taiwanese people have been so good to me."  

Sexy in a Wholesome Kind of Way
Perhaps she should have been flattered, but when South Indian actress and dancer Vichitra was told there had been complaints that she was too sexy to appear at a charity concert in Penang, Malaysia, saying thank you was the last thing on her mind. Yes, she said, she may have had a few sexy roles in her career, but the Consumer Association of Penang was "narrow-minded" for claiming she would "pave the way for the moral decadence of the Indian community." So she went ahead and performed anyway.

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Asiaweek Newsmap: Get the week's leading news stories, by region, from Newsmap


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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