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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 22, 1999 VOL. 25 NO. 42

Glamor Girl in Trouble

An Anwar accuser falls on hard times
CoCo's Eyes on America
It's Divorce - So Who Gets the Wardrobe?

photo Ad executive Ummi Hafilda Ali used to make headlines in Malaysia as one of the key people accusing Anwar Ibrahim of sodomy and sexual misconduct. Not one to mince words, she called the former Malaysian deputy premier a "dog" during his trial and prayed that he would contract AIDS. A few months ago, the 32-year-old with a taste for power-dressing and big hair made the news again when she sued the opposition newspaper Harakah, alleging that a piece of political satire had described her in sexually unflattering terms. Now Ummi is in the limelight once more, but for a rather different reason. A court in Kuala Lumpur declared her bankrupt for failing to pay a signboard supplier $78,000 when a project with the company fell apart. Ummi's financial troubles did not stop her from touring the country to give her account of Anwar's fall from grace. But those who missed her talks need not feel disappointed. Like the former White House intern Monica Lewinsky, Ummi is writing a book about her experiences. My True Confession, which she hopes to release this year, will discuss her sister-in-law's alleged affair with Anwar as well as her own relationship with the jailed leader, whom she once admired. Still, can a publisher's check be sufficient to soothe Ummi's hurt in these difficult times?  

Television: Why Are You So Strange?
A show provides Japanese viewers with a crash course in what foreigners think about them and their ways

People: Glamor Girl in Trouble
An Anwar accuser falls on hard times

Books: Children of the Killing Fields
A timely look behind Khmer Rouge terror

French accusations fly in Cambodia

Why older people benefit from some extra weight

People: The Art of Raising Hard Cash
Prince Jufri's distress sale of the century (10/15/99)

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)

CoCo's Eyes on America
Fans know she's no airhead. Between concerts and recording sessions in Taiwan, Hong Kong-born singer CoCo Lee Wen manages to fit in classes at the University of California, Irvine, where she's a biology student. The 24-year-old, who took the best Chinese music video prize at the MTV awards this year, has been a sensation in Taiwan since being spotted by a local agent in 1994. Her songs now feature on the soundtrack of a new Shanghai-made cartoon, The Magic Lotus Lantern, and the Julia Roberts movie, Runaway Bride. But can Lee's R&B-style make an impression in the U.S.? She finds out next week with the release of her first English-language album in America, Just No Other Way. Lee still dreams of studying medicine, but has reset that goal for "eight years from now." Nothing like planning ahead.  

photo It's Divorce - So Who Gets the Wardrobe?
That their first fight was over who should wear the wedding dress probably didn't augur well. But TV presenter Yoshikawa Hinano, 19, and cross-dressing singer Izam, 22, went ahead and registered their marriage in February. (Izam, pictured, vocalist for the pop group Shazna, inspired a fad for "feminized" dressing among young Japanese men: miniskirts for the fashionable male, for instance.) Within months, they were living in separate apartments , though on the same floor, and rumors began to circulate that they were on the verge of splitting up - denied, of course. Marriage didn't turn out quite the way Yoshikawa imagined it, and Izam apparently found his wife too headstrong. At the end of last month, the couple finally filed for divorce. Announcing the split, Izam recalled "good memories" of their seven months together. Sharing his ex-wife's wardrobe might be one.

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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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