Thursday, May 02, 2002
[The L.A. Times] cited unidentified industry sources as saying he was not seeking a political talk show because of potential conflicts of interest with his wife, New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton.
It would remain to be seen whether he would dive into more traditional daytime fare like celebrity interviews, "boot camps" for troubled teens or beauty makeovers. [NB: place your own joke about "sexaholics" here.]
For the record, Clinton wouldn't be the first ex-politician whose career was buffeted by sexual impropriety to take a talk show gig. Jerry Springer was mayor of Cincinnati (elected at age 33!), and before that a Cincinnati councilman. He resigned from the council during his first term after he made the tiny error of, as the BBC delicately put it, "imprudently paying a prostitute with a personal cheque." The check was discovered during a police raid.
Now if we can just get Gary Hart onto the boob tube, we'll have hit the trifecta!
Whether Mr Arafat returns as anything more than non-executive chairman is another matter. There is good reason to speculate that the person running the show from now on will be Prince Abdullah.
Hopes were not particularly high when the prince arrived at George Bush's Texas ranch last week. "The odd couple" was how a headline in the Washington Times labelled them.
But, to the surprise of many, something gelled and there may now be the beginnings of a partnership.
Since the prince casually revealed his peace initiative to a New York Times journalist in February and won approval for it from the Arab League in March, the germ of an idea has been growing in Washington. If Mr Bush were to drag the Israelis to the peace table, could Prince Abdullah drag the Arabs there too?
The test of that hypothesis came last weekend when both leaders launched a telephone offensive to end the stand-offs in Ramallah and Bethlehem. The Americans turned the heat on Israel and the Saudis "were in constant contact with Mr Arafat, while Prince Abdullah himself was talking to Bush", according to an Arab diplomat.
Great! Now if news of this partnership can just be conveyed to the ArabNews...
Palestinian officials yesterday put the death toll at 56 in the two-week Israeli assault on Jenin, dropping claims of a massacre of 500 that had sparked demands for a U.N. investigation....
[Two weeks ago, when European and particularly London newspapers were reporting estimates of "hundreds" massacred, Israeli sources in Washington said they expected the Palestinian toll to reach "45 to 55."]
I'm sure it's only a matter of time before the Guardian et al. acknowledge the error. Surely John Pilger and Robert Fisk wouldn't knowingly perpetuate a false figure just to advance a personal agenda.